WHITE PLAINS, N.Y., Oct. 16, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- "High School students can have an impact in the fight against blood cancers," states George Omiros, executive vice president, chief campaign and field development officer, The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS), the world's largest non-profit dedicated to blood cancer cures. "Last year alone, more than 4,000 high schools, along with 25,000 participating middle and elementary schools from across the United States and Canada, raised $27 million for our mission."
So why don't more students step up to the plate and get involved in volunteering and community service? According to a recent survey by DoSomething.org, 93% of teens say they want to volunteer; but a far smaller percentage of young people actually do volunteer.1 And, peer pressure is alive and well. A whopping 76% of those whose friends volunteer on a regular basis also volunteer.
LLS offers high school students an unique opportunity to have a positive impact on the lives of cancer patients, including those in their communities, with a new initiative of its 16-year-old fundraising campaign, School & Youth Programs, geared specifically to motivating high school students to get involved. The campaign is active in more than 29,000 schools nationwide, including elementary, middle and high schools. Since it began, School & Youth has helped LLS invest almost $1 billion in research to advance breakthrough cancer treatments that are saving lives today.
"When students participate in the School & Youth fundraising campaign, they learn about service, leadership, finance, marketing and philanthropy," states Omiros. "And, they see first-hand how to make a huge difference in the lives of children and adults with blood cancers. The money they raise helps LLS find cures and ensure access to treatments for blood cancer patients."
DoSomething.org also found that teens expect volunteer activities to be flexible, and fit into their mobile and social behaviors.2 The School & Youth program is designed to help students share their energy, brainpower and community service goals to help discover and deliver to patients the blood cancer treatments that are saving lives today. LLS has launched its first-ever social media campaign directed to high school students to foster engagement in the program.
How the School & Youth High School Program Works:
- A teacher or advisor and student group register to lead the program for three weeks during the 2013-2014 school year, ideally at the end of March.
- Each school's program includes coin collection, online fundraising and two to three other campaign events chosen by the students and school.
- An LLS staff representative helps students brainstorm ideas and develop committees to promote the campaign, process donations and plan logistics.
- LLS provides all the materials needed to run a successful campaign, including a program guide, online fundraising pages and tips, posters, collection boxes, and more. Information is also provided about the LLS mission: Cure leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin's disease and myeloma, and improve the quality of life of patients and their families; including videos and posters featuring local Honored Heroes, students who are currently being treated for or are survivors of blood cancer. These students have volunteered to share their stories to help remove some of the misunderstandings and fears about cancer and inspire their fellow students to join the fight against cancer.
"LLS is the voice of all blood cancer patients, and School & Youth Programs give students the opportunity to have their voices heard," said Omiros. "Students can have maximum impact and help LLS find cures and ensure access to treatments for blood cancer patients."
About The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society
The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society® (LLS) is the world's largest voluntary health agency dedicated to curing blood cancer. The LLS mission: Cure leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin's disease and myeloma, and improve the quality of life of patients and their families. LLS exists to find cures and ensure access to treatments for blood cancer patients.
Founded in 1949 and headquartered in White Plains, NY, LLS has chapters throughout the United States and Canada. To learn more, visit www.lls.org. Patients and caregivers should contact the Information Resource Center at (800) 955-4572, Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. ET. www.lls.org.
1DoSomething.org. The DoSomething.org Index on Young People and Volunteering, The Year of Friends with Benefits, 2012
2DoSomething.org. The DoSomething.org Index on Young People and Volunteering, The Year of Friends with Benefits, 2012
Contact: Kristin Hoose
SOURCE The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society