Aflac Teams with CureFest to Eradicate Childhood Cancer
WASHINGTON, Sept. 18, 2016 /PRNewswire/ — Aflac, the leading provider of voluntary insurance sales at the worksite in the U.S. and a committed corporate ally in the fight against childhood cancer, announced on Saturday its newly formed relationship with CureFest, a grassroots organization whose mission is to make childhood cancer research a national priority by uniting the childhood cancer community, the general public, physicians and researchers as well as elected leaders. The annual CureFest rally for Childhood Cancer was held in Washington, D.C., on the National Mall on Sept. 18, 2016.
"Aflac is extremely pleased to be a corporate sponsor for CureFest 2016, as we extend our national commitment to finding a cure for childhood cancer," Aflac Senior Vice President of Corporate Communications Catherine Hernandez-Blades said. "If you make one visit to the Aflac Cancer Center in Atlanta or any hospital that treats children battling cancer, you will quickly realize the heroic fight that these children wage with this disease every day. We owe it to these incredible kids and their families to elevate the national dialogue about childhood cancer, and Aflac wants to help facilitate that discussion."
In spite of thousands of new diagnoses every year, childhood cancer receives less than 5 percent of the national funding that goes toward cancer research, according to Children’s Cancer Fund. Yet, cancer remains the No. 1 cause of death by disease in the U.S. for children 15 years of age or younger. One of CureFest’s primary goals is to connect with, and educate the general public about, the need for additional funding and awareness.
"Until recently, the childhood cancer community has struggled to find its voice because thousands of foundations and groups are spread out across the country and are not integrating their messages," said Emily Belcher, CureFest organizer and mother of a child cancer patient. "As a result, the impact of their work has been diffused. We need to combine our efforts. CureFest aims to bring these groups together in our nation’s capital to spark a national movement to cure childhood cancer."
CureFest began on Saturday, Sept. 17, 2016, in Washington, D.C., including the "Night of Golden Lights," which featured live music and a speakers program and was followed by a walk to the White House gates for a candlelight vigil. On Sunday, Sept. 18, a full day of activities was held in the National Mall, including stage acts, information booths, a walk for a cure and even an appearance by the Aflac Duck in the Aflac Cancer Center’s information booth as part of a celebration of families and children dealing with childhood cancer.