NEW BRUNSWICK, N.J. – Ten-year-olds Julia Schaer and Mackenzie Maher have dedicated most of their young lives to helping others fight against cancer. Since kindergarten, Maher and Schaer, who are both students in the East Brunswick Public School District, have spent quite a bit of time selling lemonade for their cause.
Together, the girls lead the Let’s Fight Cancer (L.F.C.) Club, which recently reached its goal of collecting more than $1,000. On Wednesday, these fourth graders donated the club’s proceeds to the Bristol-Myers Squibb Children’s Hospital (BMSCH) at Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital (RWJUH) to help pediatric patients in their fight against cancer.
“Ever since I can remember, I’ve loved helping people. I’ve been raising money for charity my whole life,” Schaer said. “I met Mackenzie in nursery school and we became best friends. With her help, we started the L.F.C. Club. We’re so happy to be giving the money we’ve raised to help children with cancer and we hope that they get cured soon.”
For Maher, her motivation to fight against cancer stems from personal loss. “Both of my grandpas have cancer. One of them died. The other is still strongly fighting,” the Frost Elementary School student explained. “Cancer’s a war, be a soldier. I think everyone should join the fight. I wanted to do something to help others.”
In addition to raising money to fight cancer, Maher and Schaer have sent hand-made cards with personal notes of love and encouragement for pediatric patients at BMSCH.
The RWJ University Hospital Foundation already received a $300 donation from the student council at Warnsdorfer Elementary School, where students sold rainbow loom bracelets, snacks and Valentine’s Day cards and sponsored a movie night to raise funds to help fight pediatric cancer. Schaer, who attends the elementary school and is the school’s student council vice president, spearheaded that fundraiser.
“We are so proud of Mackenzie and Julia and all the members of the Let’s Fight Cancer Club,” said Brian D. Agnew, Senior Vice President for Development at RWJUH. “They have opened their hearts to give hope. Their hard work has resulted in more than just a donation; they have set a wonderful example for their peers and proven that you’re never too young to make a difference. On behalf of the RWJ University Hospital Foundation, I thank them, their parents and their classmates for making this gift possible.”
About Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital
Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital (RWJUH) is a 965-bed academic medical center with campuses in New Brunswick and Somerville, NJ. Its Centers of Excellence include cardiovascular care from minimally invasive heart surgery to transplantation, cancer care, stroke care, neuroscience, joint replacement, and women’s and children’s care including The Bristol-Myers Squibb Children’s Hospital at Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital (www.bmsch.org). As the flagship Cancer Hospital of Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey and the principal teaching hospital of Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School in New Brunswick, RWJUH is an innovative leader in advancing state-of-the-art care. A Level 1 Trauma Center and the only Pediatric Trauma Center in the state, RWJUH’s New Brunswick campus serves as a national resource in its ground-breaking approaches to emergency preparedness.
RWJUH has been ranked among the best hospitals in America by U.S. News & World Report seven times and has been selected by the publication as a high performing hospital in numerous specialties. The Bristol-Myers Squibb Children’s Hospital has been ranked among the best hospitals in America by U.S. News & World Report for three consecutive years.
Both the New Brunswick and Somerset campuses have earned significant national recognition for clinical quality and patient safety, including the prestigious Magnet® Award for Nursing Excellence, an “A” patient safety rating from the Leapfrog Group and “Most Wired” designation by Hospitals and Health Networks Magazine. The Joint Commission and the New Jersey Department of Health and Senior Services have designated the New Brunswick Campus as a Comprehensive Stroke Center and the Somerset Campus as a Primary Stroke Center.
The American College of Surgeons’ Commission on Cancer has rated RWJUH New Brunswick among the nation’s best comprehensive cancer centers and designated the Steeplechase Cancer Center at RWJ Somerset as a Comprehensive Community Cancer Center. The Joint Surgery Center at Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital Somerset has earned the Joint Commission’s Gold Seal of Approval for total knee and total hip replacement surgery.
About the Bristol-Myers Squibb Children's Hospital at Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital
The Bristol-Myers Squibb Children’s Hospital (BMSCH) at Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital (RWJUH) remains as the focal point of New Brunswick’s growing children’s health campus. As New Jersey’s largest free-standing, state-designated acute care children’s hospital, the state-of-the-art facility is specially designed to care for children. BMSCH has nearly 10,000 inpatient admissions and 22,000 pediatric emergency room visits annually.
From pediatric surgery, urology and cardiology to oncology, hematology and pulmonology, BMSCH’s specialists and intensivists provide advanced care for children of all ages—from fragile newborns to adolescents.
BMSCH consistently ranks among the top-rated children’s hospitals in America for patient satisfaction. In fact, BMSCH’s patient satisfaction scores are in the top 1 percent of all children’s hospitals nationwide.
As an academic hospital, BMSCH is able to draw upon the resources of Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, one of the nation’s leading comprehensive medical schools. To learn more about BMSCH, please visit www.bmsch.org.