Children with cancer hope for the same things that healthy children hope for – to grow up and have a long, healthy life. That’s why PCRF is committed to improving the quality of life for those affected by pediatric cancer by offering annual scholarship awards to cancer warriors and survivors. At PCRF, we believe in giving hope and futures and thanks to research, these kids are able to do just that!
We’d like you to meet our 2018 PCRF Scholarship Awardees. We’re so incredibly inspired by their stories of strength, courage and resiliency. Although a cancer diagnosis comes with its own set of challenges and obstacles, cancer helped Lucas find his voice.
“My journey with cancer impacted my life in ways that I never imagined. When I was diagnosed with cancer at ten years old, I had no idea what was in store for me; the only thing I knew about cancer was that it was a deadly disease that affected a small fraction of the people in the world. As the first few rounds and even years of chemotherapy started, I only saw cancer as the worst thing to have happened in my life. I saw it as only a negative. As time went on and I started to mature, I began to realize that cancer wasn’t the worst thing to happen to me. In fact, it turned out to be the best thing I could have asked for.
By age thirteen, cancer taught me that for every negative, there is a positive – but it’s up to you to find that positive. Cancer gave me the opportunity to do things I never imagined of doing. It has allowed me to speak at events to people who were twice or triple my age. It allowed me to find my voice and meet new people who were just like me. Cancer allowed me to tell my story at PCRF and Make-a-Wish events and inspire thousands of people to help make a change so that children and adults no longer have to deal with the pain of cancer.
Cancer has molded my life and is part of me forever. Without it, I would still have no idea what I want to do with my life. After and during chemotherapy sessions at both the hospital and clinic, some of the most impactful moments were talking to child psychologists who would walk around and ask how I was feeling or if I needed to talk about stress. These child psychologists always made me feel as if I was a normal kid and they always understood me. Because of these psychologists I want to be a child psychologist so I can help cancer patients feel normal and connect to them a little more personally because I know what they’re going through.
I will achieve this goal of mine by starting my post-high school academics at Arizona State next year. I plan on taking all the required classes I need so I can work on psychology. My plan is to get a 4.0 GPA by studying hard and putting my school work before anything else. My end goal is to become a child psychologist who specializes in working with children who are coping with a disease or disorder. I want to continue to make a difference in other people’s lives.
You have the power to help kids, like Lucas, become cancer-free and live a healthy life beyond their diagnosis. Help us continue our fight to find a cure.