ASK is an organization that truly makes life better for kids with cancer. Just spend five minutes with ASK kid Campbell who is one of ASK's biggest fans and an ASK kid now in her teens. Campbell was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia with the positive Philadelphia chromosome, a rare leukemia for children, when she was six years old.
Now 15, Campbell still remembers the first time she was introduced to ASK's special events and programs for kids with cancer. "It was so comforting to talk with other kids just like me, who knew what I was going through and to go to a place where I wasn't the only bald kid," recalls Campbell. "I enjoyed getting together with them, especially when we were at the ASK Summer Camp."
A week-long summer camp is just one of the programs that ASK provides for pediatric oncology children, held at the ASK administrative offices. When it began, campers could attend multiple weeks. However, as the number of children diagnosed with cancer or rare blood diseases increased each year, campers could only attend one week due to space limitations. That's just one reason why the new ASK Family Center is so critical for children with cancer and their families.
"It's going to be so awesome," squealed Campbell when speaking of the new facility. "We can have after-school events, tutoring, parties and cook in the kitchen. Now I get to be a counselor at summer camp so I'm super excited to see the kids and hear about their progress. The new space is going to provide us a safe place for us to talk and have fun and just be kids. It's going to make so many more things possible for us."
Campbell's right. The new ASK Family Center will more than double areas for social and educational opportunities for children with specific medical and social needs. Now in a capital campaign to raise the $275,000 necessary to renovate the space, ASK kids need your help.
"I can't imagine my cancer experience without the help and guidance of ASK staff and the programs they provide for kids," gushes Campbell. "Actually, my entire family is involved in the ASK 5K (Team Soup!) and other special events and we have benefited so much from all that ASK has to offer. Even with my older brother, Parker, has attended programs for siblings. The new Family Center will allow us to do even more fun activities, reach even more kids and most importantly, help create more joy for all of us. That's amazing!"