HOPE – new unit gives hope to children with cancer
Cancer is the leading cause of death amongst children and adolescents in Sweden. The healthcare services are doing a fantastic job treating children with cancer and 80 % of these survive. However, this figure has remained constant for the past 15 years. The aim of the new HOPE unit is that all children will survive cancer.
Collaboration between the foundation Entrepreneurs for Good, The Swedish Childhood Cancer Foundation, Karolinska Institutet and the Karolinska University Hospital has resulted in the opening of the HOPE-unit (Hematological Oncological Clinical Trials Unit) at the Astrid Lindgren Children's Hospital. "HOPE is an important initiative in the effort to cure children with cancer" says Henrik Grönberg, Professor of Cancer Epidemiology at Karolinska Institutet.
The initiative for HOPE comes from Johanna and Fredrik Malm, who started the foundation Entrepreneurs for Good. Their son Nelson was diagnosed with cancer when he was three years old. Staff at the Astrid Lindgren Children's Hospital did it all they could to save him, but in the end Nelson lost his fight against cancer.
Support for HOPE is currently being sought for a start-up and implementation phase that will last five years. After this, the aim is that HOPE will be self-financed. Until then, funds of 25 million SEK are needed. So far the initiators have contributed 4.5 million SEK.
On 26th September several of Sweden's entrepreneurs and philanthropists were invited to HOPE - a conversation about childhood cancer, philanthropy and HOPE in the Aula Medica at Karolinska Institutet. It was the start of a fundraising campaign with the goal of securing HOPE's funding for the next 5 years. The gifts have already started to come in and so far we have received 10,6 million SEK from private individuals and foundations. Now we need 14.4 million kronor in order to reach the target of 25 million SEK.