NEW YORK – April 17, 2014 – Hyundai Motor America and its nonprofit organization Hyundai Hope On Wheels®announce today the launch of their 2014 nationwide grant program to fund pediatric cancer research. The launch event will take place at the Jacob Javits Center in New York City in conjunction with the New York International Auto Show. The winners of 49 Hope On Wheels pediatric cancer research grants will be announced. A nationwide tour will be conducted later this year to present these research grants to children’s hospitals.
This launch event continues a series of activities to mark the 16th year of Hyundai’s longstanding commitment in the fight against childhood cancer. Earlier this week in New York City, executives from Hyundai and Hope On Wheels rang the opening bell at the NASDAQ MarketSite in tribute to their fight against pediatric cancer. Hyundai Hope On Wheels board members also visited children battling cancer and received research progress reports at Memorial Sloan Kettering and New York Presbyterian (Hope and Heroes) children’s hospitals.
An independent 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, Hyundai Hope On Wheels is a leading funder of pediatric cancer research, with more than $86 million in grants awarded since its inception. Each year, approximately 15,000 children are diagnosed with pediatric cancer, making it the leading cause of death by disease for children in the U.S. That is why the primary mission of the program is to fund innovative pediatric cancer research. Hope On Wheels also aims to increase public awareness about the importance of this cause.
Two young cancer survivors, Ashley Burnette and Kenneth Thomas, were recently named the National Youth Ambassadors for Hope On Wheels. The pair will travel the country over the next two years sharing their stories of courage and hope with other children diagnosed with cancer. Additional elements of the 2014 Hope On Wheels program include a social media campaign, Pediatric Oncology Thought Leaders Summit, 5K Run/Walk Series, and National Childhood Cancer Awareness Month events in September.
“Hyundai is a brand that not only builds great cars, but is committed to doing good things that serve society’s needs,” said Dave Zuchowski, President and CEO of Hyundai Motor America. “Pediatric cancer is an issue that affects far too many children. Together with our dealers, we joined this fight in 1998. We are committed to ending this disease by funding life-saving research. Through Hope On Wheels, we look forward to a world in which no child will have to face this terrible disease.”
Hyundai Hope On Wheels social media campaign theme: Just One Wish
The Hyundai Hope On Wheels campaign theme for this year is “Just One Wish.” This theme is designed to convey the organization’s mission to end childhood cancer. The campaign connects thousands of families affected by the disease via social media. A series of online videos profile child cancer survivors and their stories of hope. Visitors to the Hyundai Hope On Wheels website and social media channels can join the effort by posting their own message of hope using the hashtag #EndChildhoodCancer.
Every 36 minutes a child is diagnosed with cancer. The goal of the Just One Wish campaign is to show the collective support for these children and to celebrate their hope, dreams and goals. The social community gives a voice on behalf of these children whose voices may otherwise go unheard.
2014 Grant Awards Recipients
Hyundai Hope On Wheels has two categories of research grant awards available to eligible COG member institutions: the Hyundai Young Investigators Clinical Award and the Hyundai Scholar Hope Award. The Clinical Award is a $75,000 grant available to young investigators pursuing innovative research ideas. The Scholar Hope Award is a $250,000 competitive grant, which is selected by a peer review panel for two-year funding of promising research work. Together, both grants are aimed at expanding the knowledge base of the disease and improving the standards of care.
A list of all grant winners and research summaries for 2014 may be found on the Hyundai Hope On Wheels website,www.hyundaihopeonwheels.org/research.
The Hyundai Bio-Repository and Children’s Oncology Group Project:EveryChild
In a bold move to accelerate the scientific study of pediatric cancer, Hyundai Hope On Wheels announced a $2 million grant award to the Children’s Oncology Group (COG). The Children’s Oncology Group, the world’s largest organization devoted exclusively to childhood and adolescent cancer research, is leading an unprecedented research effort, calledProject:EveryChild, through its more than 200 children’s hospitals, universities, and cancer centers.
This grant supports the largest study of its kind. Biospecimens (tumor tissue) from the thousands of children diagnosed with childhood cancer each year will be stored at the Hyundai Hope On Wheels COG Biorepository. These biospecimens will then be available to scientists across the country and around the world that are committed to finding better cures for children with cancer. Participation in this study will be offered to every child diagnosed with cancer, no matter how common or rare the cancer may be.
“The research tools available to scientists to study cancer in the laboratory are more powerful than anyone could have imagined 10 years ago,” said Dr. Peter Adamson, Chairman of the Children’s Oncology Group. “The technology available in leading research laboratories around the world can be used to discover the key changes that occur in cancer cells, information that is critical to developing more effective treatments. With the generous support of Hyundai Hope On Wheels, we will be able to study every type of childhood cancer, and lead the way to better cures for all children with cancer.”
Hyundai U.S. Dealers Support Fight for Cancer Research
Hyundai Hope On Wheels is the united effort of Hyundai Motor America and its dealers. With the sale of every new vehicle in the U.S., a donation is made to pediatric cancer research. COG member institutions are invited to submit research proposals each year for funding. A leading committee of pediatric oncologists selects the grant applications to be funded, based on the greatest potential to impact the field of study.
Each grant award is presented at the winning children’s hospital along with the Hope On Wheels signature handprint ceremony. Through the handprint ceremony, pediatric cancer patients are invited to put their hands in paint and place their handprints on a white Hyundai Santa Fe. These handprints not only travel the country creating awareness about the importance of the disease, but also serve as a constant reminder of the importance of the fight.
“When I visit children’s hospitals across the country as this year’s board chairman of Hope On Wheels, I hear directly from children and their families about the devastating impact of this disease,” Mickey Pong, owner Hyundai of Carlsbad, Carlsbad, CA. “On behalf of the U.S. Hyundai dealers, we want to reassure these families that they’re not alone in this fight. Hope On Wheels is committed to finding a cure for this terrible disease. That is our wish, and we thank all of our customers and followers who support our mission.”
For more information about Hyundai Hope On Wheels, please visit www.HyundaiHopeOnWheels.org.