Each year, more than 13,500 children are diagnosed with cancer, however, only 4 percent of the National Cancer Institute’s annual budget is dedicated to pediatric cancer research.
This gap in funding is what Mrs. LesLee Hacker, biology teacher and mother of freshman Lauren Hacker, sought to close when she started the Lolo’s Angels Foundation.
Lolo’s Angels is a nonprofit organization dedicated to raising money for pediatric Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML), which is what Hacker’s daughter Lauren was diagnosed with when she was in fifth grade. “The inspiration was all of those months in the hospital. You have a lot of time on your hands, and I just kept thinking ‘How can I help?’” Mrs. LesLee Hacker said.
The nonprofit will host bone marrow and blood drives, as well as increase pediatric cancer awareness through political activism and events that honor kids who have had cancer.
When brainstorming for Lolo’s Angels, Hacker decided to have both an Executive Board and a Junior Board.
The Executive Board is made up of adults from a slew of professions who make the big decisions and guide the Junior Board in running the nonprofit, while the Junior Board is made up of students from Creighton Prep, Marian and Duchesne who work together to help plan events and spread the word around to high schools. “The Junior Board is special because I feel like we are going to actually help save children’s lives by raising money for pediatric cancer,” sophomore and Junior Board Member Marin Waters said.
On Oct. 7, Lolo’s Angels hosted their first official event in the Hacker’s backyard. The night started with a fundraiser for adults, which was planned mostly by the Executive Board.
At 9:30 p.m., teenagers who bought tickets for the Backyard Bash, the portion planned by the Junior Board, showed up and danced the night away. Tickets were sold for $20 and all of the money went straight to AML research.
“It was inspirational because it was amazing to see such a large group of young people get together for something that matters,” senior Lucy Fishburn said.
Lolo’s Angels is helping to pave the way for the younger generation to get involved in finally putting an end to cancer.
Even if you are not on the Junior Board, you can still help to raise money and awareness and prove what young people are capable of accomplishing. Be on the lookout for blood and bone marrow drives, as well as any upcoming news from Lolo’s Angels.