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William Ferguson, MD

The St. Baldrick’s Foundation, a volunteer-driven and donor-centered charity dedicated to raising money for childhood cancer research, is proud to award a one-year infrastructure grant of $168,115 to SSM Cardinal Glennon Children’s Medical Center, affiliated with Saint Louis University. The Foundation’s infrastructure grants provide resources to institutions enabling them to conduct more research and enroll more kids in clinical trials.

Worldwide a child is diagnosed with cancer every three minutes, and one in five children diagnosed in the U.S. will not survive. These startling realities combined with the looming budget cuts that could potentially limit access to clinical trials and delay the progress of promising research, make the Foundation’s efforts to conquer childhood cancers critical.

“SSM Cardinal Glennon Children’s Medical Center and Saint Louis University actively work with the Children’s Oncology Group to promote more effective treatment for childhood cancers,” says Dr. William S. Ferguson, medical director of the Bob Costas Cancer Center at SSM Cardinal Glennon and division director of Hematology/Oncology at Saint Louis University School of Medicine. “Extensive oversight and careful reporting of results are essential for this research to be done in a safe and timely fashion. The generous support of the St. Baldrick’s Foundation will allow more children in Missouri and Southern Illinois to be part of this research effort that continues to dramatically improve the outlook for children with cancer.”

This series of grants, combined with the more than $23 million awarded in July to fund cutting-edge research, brings the St. Baldrick’s Foundation’s funding total to more than $25 million awarded in 2012. Grants were awarded based on the need of the institution and its patients, anticipated results of the grant and local participation in St. Baldrick’s events.

The largest St. Baldrick’s event in St. Louis and one of the largest in the world, the Helen Fitzgerald’s Irish Grill and Pub event is organized by SSM Cardinal Glennon nurse Peggy Schneider with support from many other nurses at the hospital. The event has raised more than $2.5 million to date.

“A St. Baldrick’s event provides a tangible opportunity for family members and friends to share their gratitude, and also make a difference for others by doing something ‘hands-on’ whether that be through donation of their hair, their time or their funds,” says Laura Wulf, longtime former organizer of the event. “The importance of increased research funding, accessibility to treatment options and this outlet for gratitude took on a whole new level of importance for me in 2009 when my youngest son was diagnosed with lymphoma. We are celebrating his access to the best known treatment, supportive care and quality of life that he has; however, we know that improvements and a cure are not achieved for him or for others without increased cooperative research, infrastructure support and cutting-edge, dedicated research in specialized areas. I am thrilled that our St. Baldrick’s involvement has made both infrastructure and fellowship grants possible in our local institutions.”


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