Sunday, August 24, 2014

Game Plan

So here it is. The last week of August. If you're sad about the end of summer, I have some good news for you. It's just the beginning of the most important time of the year for childhood cancer awareness. 

What do you mean, you say? We mean, use September—the next 4 1/2 weeks—to stick it to children's brain cancer. How?

1. Take out your credit card and register for the Kyrie Foundation 5K scheduled for Saturday, October 25. Right now. We'll wait.
2. Use your personal 5K registration page to invite your friends and fam to walk or run with you.
3. Send an email to your pals explaining that you need their help and their donations to beat this cancer for the little brains that can't.
4. Post on Facebook the link to your personal 5K page so that friends can donate to your participation.
5. If you've never run a 5K before (like me), download the Couch to 5K app. There's still time to really do this thing!
6. Keep reminding people. There are a lot of distractions out there, and people forget about stuff.
7. Feel free to replace your FB profile photo or post this photo in your status or on your blog. Tell people why your work matters.

8. Send another email.
9. Ask your office to make a donation.
10. Post again.
11. Count your blessings. Plenty of moms and dads out there are hoping and praying that someone like you will do something--anything--to help find a cure for their child.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Young hearts. Old souls.

Nothing warms our hearts more than when kids help other kids. And from day one, we have had young supporters working alongside the Kyrie Foundation, inspiring the adult volunteers.

• Madison and Mason have been super-incredible fundraisers each and every year for the walk, and the Stolz kids who have generously put together gift baskets.
• Anna, who has been our little light of inspiration since our very first year.
• The Andover Central Softball girls have organized fundraising tournaments and face-painted for the cause.
• The Andover Central student who organized a school assembly to help with the Pepsi Good voting several years ago.
Kaela, who's battled a brain tumor herself, and her brother put together last year's Twilight Walk video and raise money selling t-shirts to donate to the foundation.
• Bishop Carroll's NHS students have volunteered to help each year.
• The little elementary school class in Valley Center who fundraised for the foundation.
• Vanna who made duct tape wallets and Brett who wove bracelets to help the cause.
• Jayce and Audrey who have helped their mom set up every krop.
• The volunteer families who bring their kids to our events for set-up, tear-down and you-name-it.
• Emma and Abby who gave asked their friends for donations instead of gifts for their 8th birthdays.

And so many more!

And when you look at this year's 5K event, you should know that this, too, is the work of a young and dedicated heart.

For several years, patrons have asked for a 5K. Already stretched thin on resources, the board has never had the bandwidth or the experience to organize one ... until Broc. A junior this year at Maize High School, Broc has wrangled the help of his friends, family, neighbors and local businesspeople to help make the first-ever Kyrie Foundation 5K a reality. He's consulted those with experience organizing an event like this, he's found sponsors, he worked with Sedgwick County Park, he's found the timing company, he's organized the volunteers, he's figuring out the route ... we so admired his commitment, his passion and his follow-though that we—as the foundation—put our energy into helping him make this happen, too.

He wears his Kyrie gear proudly. And many days, I've often thought of him as the big brother that every kid with a brain tumor should have. His optimism and spirit are pure; he is certainly not the entitled millennial that the media likes talking about. He is the teen who will grow up to be the guy you want in your corner, and he's just one of the reasons you should run with us on October 25.

When people shake their heads and mutter, "kids today," I can't help but shake my head and retort, "adults today." He had the guts to try something new and unchartered. He is really doing SOMETHING about this too-hard-to-think-about disease. He answered the call. We hope you will, too.

Need more motivation? Kickstart you week with a listen.