“The goal of ours has never been the biggest. It’s to have the most significant impact. We can’t do it without you” ~Quote from @LIVESTRONG Twitter Page
I find myself in Austin, Texas today. I am here to attend a LIVESTRONG Leader Assembly. Two hundred leaders (serious cancer ButtKickers!) from around the world have gathered here. It is no secret that I am focused on doing all that I can do to end childhood cancer; I also know that the mission of LIVESTRONG is one I absolutely need to support.
When people hear the word, “LIVESTRONG,” most know the organization has something to do with Lance Armstrong. The last middle school I spoke at, the kids had no idea of who Lance Armstrong is! I was excited to tell them who he is, what he has accomplished, what he has created, and to give them yellow LIVESTRONG wristbands. They were then excited to go tell their friends about Lance and LIVESTRONG.
What I have learned about LIVESTRONG has given me a great desire to help them achieve their goals. I have tremendous respect for the respect they have for their fellow humans. I find that compassion, understanding, intelligence, commitment, dedication, tenacity, and guts define LIVESTRONG.
Rather than attempt to summarize the LIVESTRONG Manifesto, I will copy it in full below. If you know someone who has just been diagnosed with cancer—someone searching for treatment options— calling LIVESTRONG is an excellent place to begin gathering information. This is just the tip of the iceberg for the help they have to offer.
The LIVESTRONG Manifesto (from www.livestrong.org )
We believe in life.
We believe in living every minute of it with every ounce of your being.
And that you must not let cancer take control of it.
We believe in energy: channeled and fierce.
We believe in focus: getting smart and living strong.
Unity is strength. Knowledge is power. Attitude is everything.
This is LIVESTRONG.
We kick in the moment you’re diagnosed.
We help you accept the tears. Acknowledge the rage.
We believe in your right to live without pain.
We believe in information. Not pity.
And in straight, open talk about cancer.
With husbands, wives and partners. With kids, friends and neighbors. Your healthcare team. And the people you live with, work with, cry and laugh with.
This is no time to pull punches.
You’re in the fight of your life.
We’re about the hard stuff.
Like finding the nerve to ask for a second opinion.
And a third, or a fourth, if that’s what it takes.
We’re about preventing cancer. Finding it early. Getting smart about clinical trials.
And if it comes to it, being in control of how your life ends.
It’s your life. You will have it your way.
We’re about the practical stuff.
Planning for surviving. Banking your sperm. Preserving your fertility. Organizing your finances. Dealing with hospitals, specialists, insurance companies and employers.
It’s knowing your rights.
It’s your life.
Take no prisoners.
We’re about the fight.
We’re your advocate before policymakers. Your champion within the healthcare system. Your sponsor in the research labs.
And we know the fight never ends.
Cancer may leave your body, but it never leaves your life.
This is LIVESTRONG.
Founded and inspired by Lance Armstrong, one of the toughest cancer survivors on the planet.
I am grateful to have been chosen as a 2012 LIVESTRONG Leader. I look forward to using everything I learn here to truly make a difference in this world for people fighting cancer.
Did you know that LIVESTRONG has a program called LIVESTRONG At School? http://www.scholastic.com/livestrong/
If you are an educator, you can have a huge impact in the life of a child by sharing this information.
Now, more meetings… more knowledge… more cohesiveness… more hope!
For these reasons and many more… I choose to LIVESTRONG !