Meet Gold Getter Captain, Candace Powell!
This year for Childhood Cancer Awareness Month, we interviewed our Gold Getter Captains to learn about their cancer survivor stories. Learn more about how you can help them #MakeItGoldForKids here.
Current Age: 17
Diagnosis: LCH (Langerhans Cell Histiocytosis)
Age at Diagnosis: 3 months
Q. What do you enjoy doing for fun?
A. The majority of my week is spent attending school and training with my rowing team. In my free time I enjoy hanging out with my friends and working out. I’m a student leader for my youth group, so I love attending church and connecting with the students and other leaders.
Q. What do you want to be when you grow up?
A. In the future, I hope to conduct genetics research. I intend on using this knowledge to help people have a healthier lifestyle. I want to learn about this, so that I can find a connection between genetics and different health issues. I am particularly interested in learning more about different cancers, obesity and muscular defects.
Q. What has your experience with cancer taught you?
A. When people learn that I am a pediatric cancer survivor I immediately see a change in their facial expression. They appear to be worried about me, but little do they know, I usually am never concerned about the disease affecting my health or physical performance. I’ve learned that everything can be overcome, and that nothing can hold you back. Being a pediatric cancer survivor has given me so many opportunities, which may seem surprising. It has never limited me, but has given me the ability to inspire others.
Q. How do you feel when you see a person or business supporting children’s cancer research?
A. Children’s cancer research receives a very small percentage of money when you review other organizations’ financial accounts. When I see that other people or businesses support children’s cancer research, it is exciting and moving, because I know that only a small portion of funding is given to children’s cancer research.
Q. What do you wish others knew about pediatric cancer?
A. Pediatric cancer isn’t just the disease itself, and it isn’t just the time period spent in the hospital. Pediatric cancer is something that stays with you for your whole life. We have survived, we are in remission, and some of us are completely cured. But, there will always be those memories of numerous appointments and hospital visits. These memories do not wear us down, yet they build us up. We can look back and see all that we have overcome, and realize that nothing can stop us. So, please do not look at us and feel as though you need to protect us or look after us. We may be fighting the biggest fight of our lives or we may have already fought it. We hope that you look at us as an inspiration, and not as a tragedy.
Q. What would you tell someone who didn’t feel like their support of #MakeItGoldForKids would make a difference?
A. If you feel this way, think about one major test you took in your life. Imagine that you were one point away from scoring a 90 (which is an A at my school), and in this moment you may not have realized that one choice could drastically change your outcome. The same applies to #MakeItGoldForKids – one more person helping may give us so many more opportunities that we originally did not have. We may appear to be a big team and have a great deal of support, but you can never have too much help. CureSearch for Children’s Cancer will not stop until all pediatric cancer is cured, and we need everyone’s help to accomplish this.
What are you planning to do to #MakeItGoldForKids this September?
A. I cannot wait until September to participate in everything I can for #MakeItGoldForKids! I plan on engaging my school, rowing team, and youth group to help #MakeItGoldForKids. I would love to have a gold party, a completely gold day, and maybe a gold baking day. In September, you can never have too much gold!
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