Dear President Obama,
My name is Melinda Marchiano, and I am sixteen years old. I am writing to you today because I see an urgent need for citizens of our country who are in desperate need. The citizens I am speaking of are the smallest, most fragile, and most incredibly brave people you have ever seen.
The citizens I speak of… children with cancer.
Did you know that cancer is the #1 disease killing children in our country?
Did you know that when children are diagnosed with cancer, 80% have advanced stages of the disease, compared to 20% in adults?
Did you know that the National Cancer Institute and the American Cancer Society allocate a smidgen of their budgets to childhood cancer?
Did you know that there has not been a single new drug approved to fight pediatric cancer in the last twenty years?
Did you know that CureSeach believes—with adequate funding—a cure is within our reach?
On March 16th and 17th, Childhood Cancer Awareness & Advocacy Day will take place on Capitol Hill. Please support the “Creating Hope Act of 2010” that was introduced by Senators Brownback, Brown, and Franken, and other childhood cancer legislation.
There are 40,000 children in the United States fighting cancer as I type these words. They need hope. Their parents need hope and their siblings need hope.
We are forgetting these children. There is no major celebrity to speak for them. There is little awareness of childhood cancer in our society, and what this translates into is suffering children.
I love my country—a land where anyone can speak for what they believe.
I believe these forgotten children need a Children’s Rights Movement.
I am the first to join the movement. Will you be second?
With my sincere gratitude,
16 Year-Old Author of Grace: A Child’s Intimate Journey Through Cancer and Recovery