The Valerie Fund's mission is to provide support for the comprehensive health care of children with cancer and blood disorders. We focus on the patient and the family who loves them. Our philosophy is that to truly heal a child, that child must be treated emotionally, socially, and developmentally as well as medically. Their families get support as well, which makes a world of difference for everyone.
None of this would have become a reality without a remarkable call to action that would honor Valerie's memory.
The year was 1970.
Three-year-old Valerie Goldstein was diagnosed with Ewing's Sarcoma, a cancer of the bone. For the next six years, Valerie's parents, Ed and Sue, built their lives around Valerie's illness and treatments. This meant traveling from their home in New Jersey to New York City in order to get the most advanced pediatric oncology treatment available - a 90 minute drive each way so Valerie could meet with doctors, receive chemotherapy or radiation treatments, have surgeries, and make multiple hospital stays. Even through the nausea and discomfort following chemotherapy, Valerie had to endure the 90 minute ride home from NYC.
Meanwhile Valerie's sister, Stacy, remained at home with friends, family, or babysitters as Ed and Sue wanted to be there for Valerie for her journey. This took an emotional and physical toll on the entire family, sapping their energies at a time they needed them most.
Ed & Sue Goldstein, nominated for the Russ Berrie Making a Difference Award
After Valerie succumbed to her cancer in 1976 at the age of nine , Ed and Sue were convinced there had to be a better way for the children and their families of New Jersey to receive treatment for life-threatening illnesses such as cancer and blood disorders. They envisioned a place that could provide families with regional outpatient treatment centers at top pediatric hospitals within an hour's drive of most of the state's population, providing state-of-the-art medical and emotional care in a happy, upbeat child-focused environment.
Forty-four years later and The Valerie Fund is NJ's leading kid's cancer charity and we provide support to approximately 6,000 kids every year. Families in our area now know they have a support system in place and do not need to face their battles alone.
You can click here to go to a concise rundown of the impact that The Valerie Fund has in new Jersey, New York City, and metro Philadelphia.
Ed & Sue with former patients from The Valerie Fund's "Where Are They Now?" book
These services and all of this support would not be possible without Valerie Goldstein and her courageous battle in the early 1970s. This is why we are making 2020 the year of #BecauseofValerie.
#BecauseofValerie The Valerie Fund Children's Centers are there to keep our kids safe and healthy. #BecauseofValerie our educational liaisons are in schools helping children keep up with their education and to teach the other kids why their classmate will attend school via a VGo robot for a while. #BecauseofValerie more than 150 kids spend a week each summer at Camp Happy Times. #BecauseofValerie specialized Sickle Cell programs support an under served community in our area. #BecauseofValerie we offer both transportation assistance and financial counseling for those families who are in need.
Ed & Sue at The Valerie Fund Walk & JAG-ONE Physical Therapy 5K in 2018
What will you do #BecauseofValerie?
Will you join us at The Valerie Fund Walk & JAG-ONE Physical Therapy 5K?
Will you donate to The Valerie Fund to keep supporting the children battling cancer?
Will you volunteer at one of The Valerie Fund events this year?
Will you host a community event in your own neighborhood, school, office, etc.?