ROGERS, Ark. (KNWA) — Cancer is the leading cause of death by disease for children in America.
Statewide, at least 16,580 new cases of cancer have been and will be diagnosed.
In the Northwest Arkansas area, 3,700 new cases of cancer will be diagnosed by the end of 2019. Daily, 10 people in NWA hear, “You have cancer.”
Thousands in Northwest Arkansas are being “difference makers”. They joined in on a telethon with KNWA/FOX24 and donated to help fight cancer during The Cancer Challenge. It ended at 10:30 p.m.
The telethon was hosted by The Cancer Challenge and KNWA/FOX24. The Cancer Challenge is a local nonprofit organization that raises funds to advocate and support world-class cancer care.
“The Cancer Challenge has been around since 1993,” said organization board member, Cameron Smith.
Since 1993, the organization has invested more than $13 million in NWA toward treatment & navigation, financial & emotional assistance, transportation, early-detection screenings & follow-up care, bereavement, charity care, tobacco prevention & cessation, community outreach, pediatric cancer care, and clinical trials, according to the organization’s website.
Several agencies donated funds throughout the day. About 5 p.m., nearly $20,000 was donated and within an hour later, about $5,000 more was donated. They raised about $35,000. All proceeds go to Northwest Arkansas organizations.
One of the largest donors was Zebra Technologies. Those with the company donated $3,000.
Erik Reynolds, receiving supervisor with Zebra Technologies said, “We have families that have suffered from cancer in our own business and it’s very, very important to us to support our employees, (and) it’s very, very important to support our community.”
Nestle Health Science also donated.
Aaron Jackson, customer business manager at Nestle Health Science said, “We want to make sure we’re not only supporting the community here in Northwest Arkansas but across the country as well. This is just a small part of what we feel like we can do.”
Two Ignite students with Team Ignite who represented The Cancer Challenge said it’s an extension of The Cancer Challenge Organization that focuses on the younger generation. It promotes the prevention and early detection of cancer.
Ignite Student Emily Sanders said, “The teens.. those are our peers and our friends, the people we go to school with every day and see all the time so it’s important to have empathy for them and show love and care for them because that’s what we want to do in the future.”