The iconic white facade that marks the Front Entrance of The Greenbrier will turn gold for the month of September once again this year in an effort to support Childhood Cancer Awareness Month. America’s Resort will light up its grand entrance each night to bring awareness to what is a critical cause in the state of West Virginia.
In the U.S. alone, nearly 16,000 children under the age of 21 are diagnosed with cancer every year, an average of 70 each year in West Virginia, and approximately a quarter of them don’t survive.
The patient in these situations isn’t the only one who suffers. A cancer diagnosis turns the lives of friends and family members upside down, and the emotions, as well as the expense, of the journey through treatment can take a major toll.
“The pain that these families experience must be incredible,” said Dr. Jill Justice, president, The Greenbrier. “We have to do all we can to find a way to help the cause, so if The Greenbrier can bring some attention to the issue, we’re thrilled to be able to do so.”
The objective of Childhood Cancer Awareness Month is to put a spotlight on the types of cancer that largely affect children and to help raise funds for research and family support.
“The National Cancer Institute only allots 3.8 percent of their budget for research for childhood cancer,” said Kelly Wymer, the cofounder of West Virginia Kids Cancer Crusaders. Her daughter, Ali, is a cancer survivor. “These kids get so little. People don’t know that, so we’re trying to spread the word.”
Turning The Greenbrier gold will serve as a reminder to guests and the nearly 2,000 Team Members at The Greenbrier that childhood cancer is a serious issue that impacts so many families throughout West Virginia and beyond.
“It’s hard for a lot of people to face,” said Wymer. “People just don’t want to look at kids with bald heads. It’s too hard. So we have to raise awareness. Without that, we will never find a cure.”
For more information on childhood cancer in West Virginia or to donate to the cause, visit www.wvkidscc.org or their Facebook page at WV Kids Cancer Crusaders. Donations can also be mailed to P.O. Box 11029, Charleston, WV, 25339.