Curing Childhood Cancer car tags supporting patients, research at Children’s of Alabama

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Curing Childhood Cancer tag. Photo via Children’s of Alabama

You’ve probably noticed the bright yellow Curing Childhood Cancer tags as you drive around Birmingham, but do you know the story behind the tag? It’s been around for fourteen years, and it’s directly benefiting cancer patients at Children’s of Alabama. Learn more about one patient’s journey and how you can show your support by purchasing the tag!

Curing Childhood Cancer: the numbers

Photo via Children’s of Alabama
  • Children’s of Alabama treats more than 90 percent of Alabama children with cancer. There are currently 300 cancer patients at Children’s.
  • $3.3 million has been raised for the Alabama Center for Childhood Cancer and Blood Disorders at Children’s of Alabama since the tag was introduced fourteen years ago.
  • Each tag is $50, and $41.25 of that goes directly to the center.
  • There are close to 6,000 Curing Childhood Cancer specialty car tags across the state–they’re in almost every county.
  • In 2018, the Alabama Center for Childhood Cancer and Blood Disorders received $228,000 from the tag. The center expects to exceed that number this year.

Why is the tag important?

Proceeds from the tag provide a consistent source of funding to the Alabama Center for Childhood Cancer and Blood Disorders for research, faculty and equipment. 

“Those who purchase a Curing Childhood Cancer tag are making a commitment to Children’s that they can renew every year,” said Emily Hornak, director of the program. It’s also a great way to show support for patients and families at Children’s of Alabama.

“When people feel compelled to do something because they know someone who has a child who has been diagnosed with cancer, this is a powerful way for people to act when they’re feeling helpless and want to help.” 

Emily Hornak, Children’s of Alabama

Meet Devin Cherry

Devin Cherry. Photo via Children’s of Alabama

When Devin Cherry was nine years old, his mother noticed that he was losing his appetite and forgoing his usual activities. After several visits to various doctors, Devin was eventually diagnosed with Burkitt’s lymphoma. He received four months of in-patient chemotherapy at Children’s of Alabama to combat the cancer and was sent home to recuperate.

Just two months after his chemotherapy treatment ended, the cancer returned in Devin’s lungs. His mother took him back to Children’s, where doctors decided that Devin needed a bone marrow transplant in addition to continued chemotherapy. Luckily, he was in the right place–Children’s of Alabama’s Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders has the only pediatric bone marrow transplant facility in the state.

Several years and a successful transplant later, Devin is now 15 and cancer-free. Go, Devin!

How you can get a tag and show your support

You can support the work of Children’s of Alabama and kids like Devin by purchasing the Curing Childhood Cancer tag the next time you go to the DMV. 

You can even customize up to six letters. (For reference, purchasing a personalized tag alone–which allows you to customize seven letters–costs $50). Why not use that money for a great cause?

“All of the Curing Childhood Cancer tags are a billboard for what is happening here at Children’s of Alabama for cancer and other blood disorders,” said Hornak. “Anybody can do it.”

Let’s kick cancer, Birmingham.