“Shortly after Hayden’s fifth birthday, he began having headaches and nausea. At first, the doctor thought he had migraines and asked his mother to keep a record of when his head hurt. After only a short period of time, Hayden’s headaches grew more frequent. Then, he began having trouble with the vision in his right eye causing him to see double. It was at this point, his mother knew there was a bigger issue at hand. Hayden was referred to an ophthalmologist for further testing.
When the doctor examined Hayden’s eyes closely, he saw abnormal swelling and immediately ordered a CT scan. The results were upsetting: There was a mass on Hayden’s brain. He underwent surgery to remove the tumor, after which a biopsy revealed more devastating news: Hayden suffered from a type of brain tumor called Medulloblastoma. Hayden’s parents had heard about St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital and immediately asked their doctor for a referral.
” Hayden’s story comes from St. Jude’s Research Hospital website.
He’s featured as this month’s “Patient of the Month”. Hayden is an adorable 6 year old boy with a beautiful smile. Other than the fact that he has no hair, you would never know that he’s been through more than most of us will endure in a lifetime. What is Medulloblastoma? It’s a highly malignant primary brain tumor which is most common in children. Re-occurrence of Medulloblastoma is almost always fatal, so fast evasive treatment is critical the first time it’s diagnosed.
There are several sound reasons’ to support the St. Jude’s Research Hospital. I’m going to tell you why you should support St. Jude’s Research Hospital, starting with its humble beginnings as a good deed by a wealthy famous man turning a personal promise into one of the most successful charities in the United States and ending with the impact it’s had on medicine today. A A good deed by a famous, wealthy man doesn’t seem all that remarkable. Hollywood stars do it all the time. But this story is particularly significant. St. Jude’s Research Hospital was founded by television star Danny Thomas.
He worked with the likes of Doris Day and acted in roles on The Dick Van Dyke Show, The Andy Griffith Show and The Mob Squad. His professional career was a resume that spanned several decades. But his most remarkable accomplishment was the foundation of St. Jude’s Research Hospital. Danny Thomas was a devout catholic. Early in his career, while still a struggling actor with a new family he prayed for an answer on how to proceed in his life.
He made a promise to build a shrine in honor of St. Jude, the patron saint of hopeless causes, if he could only proceed with and find success in his career as an entertainer. He never forgot that prayer or that promise. The shrine he built was opened in 1962 in Memphis Tennessee and stands today as a pillar of hope for families of children with cancer around the world. St. Jude’s Research Hospital was founded on the premise that any needy child would be able to receive care regardless of race, religion or the ability to pay, a hospital where no suffering child would be turned away.
Danny Thomas lived until 1991 to witness the miracle his promise to St. Jude created. His children continue to participate and avidly support St. Jude’s Research Hospital today. Without a most sincere prayer of faith during a time of great need, this world could have been in a very different place. B Cone Communications, a public relations and marketing agency puts together an annual list of the top 100 non-profit power brand companies in the US. St. Jude’s Research Hospital ranks #18 on the list with top leaders such as:
1. YMCA 2. United Way 3. American Red Cross This is significant considering St. Jude’s is one hospital accomplishing this. The other charities I mentioned are based all over the country. St. Jude boasts nearly 5 million donors and 1 million volunteers. St. Jude was named for the 6th year in a row as one of the top institutions in the annual “Best Places to Work in Academia” by Scientist Magazine in July 2011. They are one of the best employers as a research and learning hospital.
St. Jude’s Research Hospital follows the Better Business Bureau “Wise Giving Alliance Standards for Charity Accountability”. This means that St. Jude’s Research Hospital fully discloses basic information about their services and their fundraising. There is nothing to hide! You have a right as the consumer and donor to ask those questions and you can find that information. What are the differences between St. Jude’s and other charities? Most charities focus on one key marketing or fundraising area. St. Jude’s target for marketing fundraising is far larger than most charities.
Their target; preschoolers, professionals, 8th graders and 80 year olds, television, radio, local drives, school drives, trike-a-thons, math-a-thons, local, county, state and national events. Some of the big ones that you may be familiar with; the “Dream Home Giveaway”, the “Thanks and Giving Campaign” and the radio-a-thon “Country Cares”. Because of last year’s St. Jude’s NFL event, 18% of American’s said they planned to support St. Jude’s “Thanks and Giving Campaign” during this past holiday season. No opportunity is turned away.
Comparing St. Jude’s Research Hospital with other powerhouse charities such as The Susan G Koman foundation and American Cancer Society here are a few facts to consider: * The CEO for The Susan G Koman Foundation doesn’t make any money – she is the founder and therefore choses to forgo that expense leaving it in the foundation’s budget. The Susan G Koman Foundation is much smaller than St. Jude’s when talking about total revenue. Susan G Koman foundation keeps their general and administrative expenses well below 10% of their annual revenue in order to give back through outreach programs and funding valuable research.
The CEO for the American Cancer Society has an income of almost a million dollars a year. Preventcancer. com reported in 1988 that the American Cancer Society was the world’s wealthiest non-profit institution. Only 26% went to medical research programs and the rest to operating expenses which included about 60% for generous salaries, pensions, executive benefits and overhead. Nationally, less that 16 percent of all money raised is spent on direct services to cancer victims. * The CEO for St. Jude’s Research Hospital has an income that’s less than 200,000 a year.
In 2009, 74% of St. Jude’s revenue went to patient care, research and education, training and community services, 17% to fundraising and only 9 percent to administrative costs. Why do I tell you these numbers? According to the August 2010 Charity Navigator CEO Compensation Study, the average median income for the CEO of a Charity is in the 100,000 to 200,000 dollar annual income range and it is considered healthy to pay income for CEO’s rather than expect free services for a number of reasons. The differences in the percentages of revenue going to research, treatment or administrative expenses tell the real story though.
St. Jude’s uses many powerful connections, they have a “star-studded roster” like many charitable foundations, they’ve made brilliant marketing decisions and created a variety of programs which reach out to a much wider variety of consumers and business’ than other charities of its kind. C Today St. Jude’s Research Hospital is internationally recognized. St. Jude’s is a pioneer in research and treatment of children with cancer and other catastrophic diseases:
1. They are the first and only comprehensive cancer care center devoted only to children funded by the national cancer institute 2. They are the only private cancer center in the US committed to caring for and supporting children with cancer and other catastrophic diseases regardless of the family’s financial or healthcare resources. 3. Ranked as one of the best pediatric cancer hospitals in the country 4. They coordinate several cancer studies and continues to do pediatric cancer research 5. They are also now the leader in sickle cell disease research 6. They play a significant role in the research for influenza. 7. They treat over 5,700 patients per year