Hyundai Motor America and its U.S. dealers continue their long standing fight against pediatric cancer, by announcing their latest donation to pediatric cancer research, with their nonprofit organization, Hyundai Hope On Wheels. This year, the program surpasses the $100 million milestone in lifetime funding to pediatric cancer research. To mark the occasion, a Hope On Wheels handprint ceremony and grant awards presentation will be held at the Jacob Javits Center in New York City, onThursday, April 2nd at 6:30 p.m. Hyundai is also in town for the New York International Auto Show.
At the launch event, 68 grants will be presented to pediatric cancer research recipients. These children's hospitals grant winners will receive a combined $11 million in grants. Winners were selected from a nationwide application process. Each winning institution will be visited later this year, to conduct a handprint ceremony. The 2015 Hope On Wheels grants are in the following categories:
1) Hyundai Scholar Award, a $250,000 grant to support translational impact research
2) The Young Investigator Research Award, a $150,000 grant to support innovative research
3) The Impact Award, a $50,000 grant to support programmatic activities at children's hospitals
Hyundai President and CEO, Dave Zuchowski said, "For the past 17 years, Hope On Wheels has funded research targeted at some of the most promising pediatric cancer initiatives in the medical community. These research awards play a vital role in developing new studies and providing a better understanding of these diseases. Our goal is survivability – to leverage this research so that one day, we can arrive at a time when no family has to ever face the prospect of losing a child to pediatric cancer again. This is a cause that our company and our dealer partners are very passionate about." Mr. Zuchowski, a founding board member of Hyundai Hope On Wheels, will also take his message of hope and determination to several media outlets during his visit to New York. "I can think of no greater calling than to provide better futures for our children. Kids fighting pediatric cancer, their loved ones, and their caregivers can count on Hyundai and its US dealers to do everything in our power to help end this dreaded disease," he concluded.
The Hyundai billboard in Times Square (located at the corner of 47th Street between 7th Avenue and Broadway) will air a special message throughout the Easter weekend holiday to promote the importance of public awareness for pediatric cancer. Hyundai Hope on Wheels will also air messages about pediatric cancer and its importance in all New York City taxi cabs.
2015 Celebrity Ambassadors of Hope
Each year, Hope On Wheels invites one or more individuals to join the cause as an honorary Ambassador of Hope. This year, Hope On Wheels is proud to welcome the Emmy-winning journalist, actress and TV personality, Ms. Rocsi Diaz, and internationally acclaimed two-time Grammy Award-winning R&B recording artist, Ms. Melanie Fiona, both as 2015 Hope On Wheels Ambassadors of Hope. Ms. Diaz and Ms. Fiona will participate in launch activities while in New York.
Hope On Wheels will host a Mamarazzi blogger luncheon event with celebrity Sirius XM Radio stars, TheMoms, Denise Albert and Melissa Gerstein, on Thursday, April 2nd in New York. The event is for moms affected by pediatric cancer. TheMoms – Hope On Wheels event entitled "Mamarazzi," moderated by Denise and Melissa, will be hosted by Ms. Rocsi Diaz. At the event, a panel of doctors, mothers of child cancer survivors, and others will discuss the importance of awareness and the impact of the disease on families.
2015 Hope On Wheels National Program: "Just One Wish"
Building on the success of last year's nationally recognized effort, Hyundai Hope On Wheels will continue with its "Just One Wish" social media campaign as a part of the 2015 program. The theme is designed to convey the organization's goal to end childhood cancer. Children cannot fight cancer alone, and the "Just One Wish," program will highlight the wishes of every child, parent, doctor, and loved one whose only wish is to find a cure.
Visitors to Hope On Wheels' social media channels will find a series of online videos profiling child cancer survivors and their parents, particularly mothers. These are stories bravery and hope in the journey to cure. The research projects of the 2015 grants winners will also be included on the website. This year, we will also include an interactive element on our website, where parents can post a photo of their child to share their stories of courage and hope. Each week a submitted family story will be selected and shared on the Hope On Wheels website and social media channels. You can join our effort, on our website under the section "we win together" or by posting a photo on social media @HopeOnWheels, using hashtags #EndChildhoodCancer and #HopeOnWheels.
2015 Hope On Wheels Board Chairman
The newly elected chairman of Hyundai Hope On Wheels is Mr. Scott Stark. Stark, an Austin, Texas Hyundai dealer, has been on the board of Hope On Wheels since 2012. As a father, grandfather and supporter of pediatric cancer research, Stark says, "There is no higher calling than to make sure our children have the best future we can give them. I am honored to have been elected the 2015 chairman for Hyundai Hope On Wheels. The Hyundai dealers of America are proud to join the company in such an important cause." Stark concluded, "We know we are not ready to issue a flag of victory in the fight against pediatric cancer. While an 80 percent cure rate is to be commended, even one more day, one more child, one more family to suffer the ravages of pediatric cancer, is just one too many. We won't stop until we find a cure."
2015 Hope On Wheels National Tour
Every year, approximately 15,000 children are diagnosed with cancer, making cancer the leading cause of death by disease for children in the U.S. This year Hope On Wheels will travel the nation in a Hyundai Santa Fe SUV – the official hope vehicle, to the respective children's hospital grant winners. At each event, its signature handprint ceremony is held, in which pediatric cancer survivors dip their hands in paint and place their handprints on the hope vehicle. In September, National Pediatric Cancer Awareness month, the winners of the Quantum Research award will be announced.
For more information about Hyundai Hope On Wheels and to view a list of our 2015 Hope On Wheels grant winners, please visit www.hyundaihopeonwheels.org/research.