Valerie Fund hopes to raise more than $1 million for 5th consecutive year

MAPLEWOOD / VERONA, NJ — More than 13,000 supporters of The Valerie Fund were invited recently through a statewide mailing campaign to register for the 2016 Valerie Fund Walk & JAG Physical Therapy 5K Run. The event will be Saturday, June 11, in Verona Park, at Bloomfield and Lakeside avenues in Verona. To learn more about the event and to register for the certified 5K race and the walk, visit www.thevaleriefund.org/walk or call The Valerie Fund offices at 973-761-0422.

Since 2006, the nonprofit organization’s premier fundraiser has grown steadily — in attendance, number of donations and sponsorship participation. On June 11, more than 4,000 people are expected to join several hundred Valerie Fund patients and families in recognition of their courage and to spread awareness of pediatric cancers and blood disorders.

Beginning in September, the month designated as Sickle Cell Awareness and Childhood Cancer Awareness, The Valerie Fund has been promoting its Red & Gold Campaign, the colors of sickle cell — red — and pediatric cancer — gold — awareness. Dozens of mayors across the state issued proclamations and made presentations in honor of the children of The Valerie Fund. The campaign focuses on townwide fundraising initiatives and encourages community members to “paint” New Jersey red and gold. Go to www.thevaleriefund.org/walk to view a map charting the progress of the campaign.

The Valerie Fund, based in Maplewood, addresses the most immediate needs of patients and families whose lives have been suddenly and dramatically upended. Core services provide emotional, practical and financial support complementing state-of-the-art medical treatment at seven Valerie Fund Children’s Centers located in New Jersey, New York and metropolitan Philadelphia. The hallmark of The Valerie Fund services ensures that families and hospitals do not have to rely on insurance reimbursements to receive the range of support of a multi-disciplinary team, including a staff of social workers, psychologists, child life specialists and educational liaisons. More than 4,000 children with cancer and blood disorders are treated annually.

After their 9-year-old daughter, Valerie, succumbed to cancer, Sue and Ed Goldstein were determined that no family should have to travel great distances to receive superior medical care. Along with a group of close friends, they began fundraising efforts from their living room — tireless work that would lead to the 1977 opening of New Jersey’s first pediatric oncology facility at Summit’s Overlook Hospital. Forty years later, The Valerie Fund’s mission remains that of supporting comprehensive health care for children battling cancer and blood disorders.

For more information, contact Bunny Flanders at bflanders@thevaleriefund.org.

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