Childhood cancer statistics featuring Love Your Melon t-shirt. Mallory Maher/The Commuter.

U.S. College Students Work to Improve the Lives of Pediatric Cancer Patients

U.S. based organization, Love Your Melon, is looking to provide more research funding to the cause of childhood cancer, but cannot do so without the help of their college ambassadors.

According to The Truth 365, every year more than 15,000 children are diagnosed with cancer, however, childhood cancer only gets four percent of national research funding.

Love Your Melon was founded in 2012 by two college students in an entrepreneurship class at the University of St. Thomas. Students Zachary Quinn and Brian Keller were looking to make a difference in the lives of children with cancer. The Love Your Melon Campus Crew Program is a crew made up of more than 13,500 college students at more than 840 colleges and universities that are determined to improve the lives of children battling cancer. Campus Crew Members are the driving force behind Love Your Melon.

“As a campus crew member, I help coordinate events around campus to spread awareness about LYM and raise money for pediatric cancer research,” Victoria Knox, Liberty University Campus Crew member said. “I also get to help and go on trips to visit families in my area and take the kids to do fun adventures to get their mind off of cancer and treatment, at least a little while.”

All Love Your Melon hats are made in the United States. People may request hats for pediatric cancer patients on the company’s website. A campus crew member will deliver the hats.

“I love how Love Your Melon raises awareness for childhood cancer since not many people know too much about it,” Lily Weaver, Ewing Sarcoma cancer patient, said. “Their hats are my favorite to wear because they are so comfortable and support a great cause.”

All around the country, crew members are able to take children battling cancer on unique therapeutic adventures tailored specifically to their interests. Adventures have included helicopter rides, trampoline parks, trips to the zoo, and professional sporting events.

“My favorite part is when we get to visit kids that are battling cancer,” Knox said. “It’s incredible to watch those kids experience joy because of LYM and what they’re doing for kids going through such a tough time. I would recommend joining a crew to all college students. It has been the highlight of my college career and something I will carry with me my whole life.”

LYM was founded by, and continues to be run primarily by college students who volunteer their time toward the greater good, motivated by a sometimes personal desire to improve children’s lives.

“Most of the people on my crew have been affected by cancer in some way or they, themselves, have been affected by cancer in the past,” Anna Brignola, Temple University Campus Crew Member, said. “Being able to help and being able to put a smile on so many kids faces by going to the hospital and giving them the beanies is just more than rewarding and I’m just very grateful to even have this opportunity.”

LYM sells a wide array of accessories, including beanies, scarves, shirts, and so much more. According to LYM, 50 percent of website purchases fund pediatric cancer research or cancer care.

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