Changing the Narrative for Kids with Cancer


The St. Baldrick’s Foundation, a volunteer-powered charity dedicated to funding childhood cancer research, announces its Kids Are Special: Let’s Treat Them That Way national campaign. Focused on celebrating kids and giving them the happy childhoods they deserve, the campaign highlights the need for finding treatments that are specifically designed for kids with cancer.

With this bold new initiative, St. Baldrick’s looks to change the narrative around pediatric cancers, by showing kids as their truest selves — fun-loving, carefree, refreshingly honest, and always a little goofy. St. Baldrick’s puts the emphasis back on kids, while disempowering the label of “cancer.” All communication is strategically designed to remind us all that as adults we have the power to give kids happy childhoods free from cancer by helping to fund the best research worldwide. The campaign includes TV, print, radio, digital, and billboard placements featuring real kids doing kid-like things; from playing with their food to getting caught with paint on their faces, all with the message: Kids Are Special: Let’s Treat Them That Way.

“At St. Baldrick’s, we’re all about the kids,” said Kathleen Ruddy, St. Baldrick’s CEO. “We celebrate them, rather than pity them or feel guilty that they get ill. We focus on what our mission is setting out to do: giving children with cancer their best chance at a long and healthy life by funding the very best research, no matter where it is taking place. With grants to world-renowned research centers as well as local institutions where children are treated for cancer, St. Baldrick’s fuels discovery and gives kids access to the most cutting edge treatments.

“The fact that in the last 20 years, only three new drugs have been developed specifically for the treatment of childhood cancers is unacceptable,” continued Ruddy. “And while we have made strides in cancer cures, the children who do survive it often experience debilitating effects from the treatments they are given, most all of which are too toxic for their developing bodies. With limited funding from the federal government, the St. Baldrick’s Foundation is critical to the continued advancement of research. Through this campaign, St. Baldrick’s is raising awareness about kids’ cancer in a way that hasn’t been done before, by focusing on the happy, innocent nature of kids that should be preserved and not interrupted by hospital visits, needles, and adult-sized treatment regimens.”

Help spread awareness by sharing photos of the kids in your life doing special things on social media with the hashtag #KidsAreSpecial.

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