PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Preventing childhood cancer, that’s the goal at one local hospital receiving millions of dollars today to fight the cause. Health Reporter Stephanie Stahl is On Your Side with more.

Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation is giving two million dollars to The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia’s Center for Childhood Cancer Research. And the money isn’t stopping there. The hospital is actually matching the donation with hopes that kids will benefit right away.

Nineteen-year-old Tom Heleniak feels lucky to be alive, after being diagnosed three years ago with osteosarcoma in his leg.

“I also had it spread to my ribs, sternum and lungs,” said Tom. Prognosis was grim. But thanks to a drug clinical trial at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia Tom is doing well today.

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“For it to be working is just amazing,” said Tom.

“There are kids out there who need our help every single day,” said Liz Scott, mother of Alex Scott who died from neuroblastoma. The foundation was developed in her memory.

Today the foundation presented a check for two million dollars to CHOP, to help people like Tom.

“We don’t like the money to sit around. We want it to be used because these kids don’t have time,” said Alex’s father.

The money will fund a variety of projects, including research in the lab where doctors hope to develop targeted therapies that will quickly get to pediatric cancer patients.

“Really it’s a four million dollar investment in working towards a cure for childhood cancer,” said Dr. John Maris, Director of CHOP’s Center for Childhood Cancer Research.

It’s an important step for patients like Tom, who was able to graduate from high school and is now in college, even an active volunteer fireman.

“That’s above and beyond amazing,” said Tom.

The Alex Lemonade Stand Foundation has raised more than 40 millions dollars for pediatric cancer, funding over 150 research projects across the country.

CBS-3 will be hosting a telethon for the foundation next month to help raise money for cancer research.


Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation –
The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia Center For Childhood Cancer Research –
The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia Cancer Center –

Reported by Stephanie Stahl, CBS 3

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