NEW YORK – April 20, 2011 – Hyundai Motor America and its dealers announced today at the New York International Auto Show plans to donate more than $10 million to support childhood cancer research through the 2011 Hyundai Hope on Wheels® program.
Kicking off with a $150,000 donation to Morgan Stanley Children’s Hospital of New York-Presbyterian, Hyundai Hope on Wheels, Hyundai’s nonprofit organization, will visit institutions across the U.S. in 2011 and award grants for pediatric cancer research. There are two types of Hyundai Hope on Wheels grants to be awarded: 1) Hyundai Scholars and 2) September Hope Grants.
With its Hyundai Scholars grants, Hope on Wheels will award research grants to 50 children’s hospitals in 2011. The grant recipients, known as a “Hyundai Scholar,” will receive a combined total of $2.7 million from Hyundai Hope on Wheels. Each of these 50 Hyundai Scholar grants will go toward funding new pediatric cancer research projects, and will be presented during a Hope on Wheels Handprint Ceremony. At the ceremony, children diagnosed with cancer get to place their handprints in colorful paint on a 2011 Hyundai Santa Fe, the official vehicle of the Hope on Wheels tour, to commemorate their brave battles with cancer.
During Childhood Cancer Awareness month, Hyundai will donate additional grants in the amount of $100,000 through its competitive September Hope Grants program. The September program allows Children’s Oncology Group (COG) member institutions seeking funding in areas of childhood cancer research to apply for the grants, which are then reviewed by Hyundai’s board of medical directors and awarded to hospitals around the U.S.
The 2011 program will mark the 13th straight year of Hope on Wheels’ mission to fight childhood cancer, and the program will donate a total of $10.2 million to children’s hospitals across the nation, a 15 percent increase from last year.
Along the way, Hyundai’s National Youth Ambassador and pediatric cancer survivor, Brianna Commerford, 13, will join Hyundai for a second year at children’s hospital Handprint Ceremonies all over the country. Brianna battled Stage IV Hodgkin’s Lymphoma, and is now sharing her story with children, families, medical staff and communities at Hyundai Hope on Wheels ceremonies.
“At Hyundai, we thrive on new thinking and new possibilities, and Hope on Wheels supports doctors and hospitals doing just that – creating new possibilities that could someday cure childhood cancer,” said John Krafcik, president and CEO of Hyundai Motor America. “We’re proud that for 13 years, through year-end 2011, Hyundai and its dealers will have donated more than $34 million to the cause. Our goal is to support the important research that will find a cure for pediatric cancer.”
“Since 2004, Hyundai has been a dedicated donor to the children’s cancer research program at our institution,” said Dr. Michael Weiner, director, Herbert Irving Child and Adolescent Oncology Center at New York-Presbyterian/Morgan Stanley Children’s Hospital. “We are proud to be a recipient of Hyundai’s generosity and to kick-off this year’s program in support for children with cancer.”
During Childhood Cancer Awareness month this September, Hyundai Hope on Wheels will visit 60 more hospitals across the country to donate grants to hospital programs dedicated to childhood cancer research. Visit the www.HyundaiHopeOnWheels.org in August to find out which hospital and city will be the recipient of the first donation that launches this whirlwind month.
“Hope on Wheels gives Hyundai dealers an amazing opportunity to give back to our respective communities as we stand together to fight against childhood cancer,” said Oscar Leeser, Chairman of the Hyundai Hope on Wheels Foundation and dealer owner of Hyundai of El Paso in El Paso, Texas. “We are proud to join these brave children and doctors in what our national youth ambassador, Brianna, calls their ‘journey to wellness.’”