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Nonprofit Provides Immediate Financial Assistance to Families with Pediatric Cancer Diagnosis

By Kelly Church

Founded with the intention to provide emergency financial assistance for children fighting cancer, the Jessica June Children's Cancer Foundation (JJCCF) is a Ft. Lauderdale, FL nonprofit that has reached families and children all over the state. Named after 7-year-old Jessica June who lost a tragic and sudden battle with Acute Myelogenous Leukemia in 2003, the organization was founded by Jessica's mother Sandra Muvdi with the hope of changing the all-too-common standard of devastating cancer diagnoses resulting in a family's financial crisis.

"No parent prepares for the possibility of being told their child has cancer and the consequences thereafter," Muvdi says. "A diagnosis of childhood cancer creates an immediate medical and emotional crisis while also creating a financial crisis for many families. JJCCF is committed to providing emergency financial relief to help families enduring pediatric cancer pay for everyday necessities such as medical, utility, rent, car, gas, and food."

For many families dealing with a child's cancer prognosis, parent's are forced to leave their jobs in order to be able to home school their kids (many children can't attend public school due to their compromised immune systems) and be present to take their child to doctor's appointments and accommodate for hospital visits. Muvdi says this can "plunge a hard-working family into poverty." Acting under the belief that financial assistance for a family can truly help save a child's life, JJCCF steps in.

"This direct and tangible temporary financial assistance JJCCF provides is vital to the survival of these children while they receive cancer treatment and prevents a family from spiraling down," Muvdi says. "JJCCF's immediate and timely interventions have prevented evictions, foreclosures, car repossessions, loss of electricity, and malnutrition which ultimately has resulted in the children having a better chance of surviving the fight against cancer."

Most families, according to Muvdi, request assistance with rent payments and grocery/gas gift cards. Money is typically raised through grants, individual donations and corporate donations. Anybody can visit the JJCCF website and donate any monetary amount. Those who want to get involved can also volunteer. Volunteers work on fundraising events, programs and daily office needs. No matter what you have to offer, JJCCF is happy to take any form of donation, whether it be financial or time.

"Giving these families a small hand prevents destabilization to the point of no return," Muvdi says. "No family should have to deal with such distress at this dreadful time in their life when their main concern should be saving their child's life."

To make a donation, volunteer, read more about Jessica June's story, or find out about the next fundraising event, visit the Jessica June Children's Cancer Foundation website.

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