Hyundai Hope on Wheels once again made its mark on children’s health and wellness with a $50,000 gift to pediatric cancer research at Children’s National. The gift was celebrated with a check presentation and handprint ceremony at the hospital on June 27.
The gift will support a study to reduce the harmful side effects children experience from cancer treatment with a comprehensive database that tracks patient genetics and the side effects the patients have experienced, noted in their own words. “Our goal is to improve the quality of life of our patients, so they can not only survive, but also thrive and live long, healthy lives,” said pediatric oncologist Dr. Jeffrey Dome, vice president of the Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders, who is running the study along with Dr. Shana Jacobs. “We wouldn’t be able to do this study without Hyundai Hope on Wheels.”
Since 2010, Hyundai Hope on Wheels, the philanthropic arm of Hyundai Motor America, has donated more than $1.3 million to Children’s National. “We strive for the day that no child has to ever hear the words, ‘you have pediatric cancer,’” said Zafar Brooks, executive director of the board of Hyundai Hope on Wheels.
Three Children’s National oncology patients joined cancer survivor and Hyundai Hope on Wheels National Youth Ambassador Hannah Adams in the customary handprint ceremony. Representatives of Hyundai’s local dealerships painted the kids’ hands and helped them place their handprint on a canvas, giving them the opportunity to leave their unique mark on the fight against cancer.
Hannah was 5 when she was diagnosed with a stage three tumor that enveloped her kidney. Because of the great strides in pediatric cancer research, the 13-year-old is back to doing the things she loves like dancing, singing, and encouraging other patients and families in their fight against cancer. "Children diagnosed with cancer, along with their families, need the hope that I was given when going through treatments,” Hannah said. “What I want to tell other kids is that life is precious, you never know what it has in store, but hope is always worth fighting for!”