GAINESVILLE, Fla. (December 13, 2011) – When it comes to results, Keira Grace Foundation has a lot to show attendees of the organization’s upcoming fundraising event, "Share the Cure 2012: The Results Show,” at the Phillips Center on March 3. The event will showcase advances being made through the nonprofit’s campaign, "Deliver the Cure: Dominican Republic,” that is saving the lives of many children with cancer.
"If your child is diagnosed with cancer and you live in the United States you’re fortunate because there’s an 80 percent chance your child will survive, but if you happen to live in a developing country your child’s survival rate automatically flips and there’s an 80 percent chance of death,” says Dr. Michael Lauzardo, co-founder of Keira Grace Foundation and chief of the division of mycobacteriology at the University of Florida College of Medicine. "By sharing the cure we already have in the United States, we can treat 10 children in a developing country for the same price of treating one American child.”
For the past seven years, Drs. Michael and Eileen Lauzardo, have focused their charity’s efforts in the Dominican Republic where they are seeing major improvements in cancer survival rates, by more than 400 percent. For the past two years they have been working with their Dominican Republic sister foundation, Fundacion Amigos contra el Cancer Infantil, to build a five-story home to host families of pediatric patients at no charge for extended overnight stays during cancer treatments. The "Share the Cure House,” is scheduled to open in the summer of 2012.
On a recent visit to Santo Domingo, former University of Florida wide receiver and Athletic Hall of Fame Inductee, Chris Doering accompanied Dr. Lauzardo to visit the pediatric cancer patients and check the progress of the house.
"The house is going to be a major asset to this community; they have nothing like it in the country. On the trip I met a 14-year-old boy who traveled two hours on a bus, by himself, just to get his cancer treatments at the hospital,” says Doering who will share more about his experience at the upcoming Keira Grace Foundation fundraising event. "As a parent, I can’t imagine being forced to make arrangements like that for my child. This house is going to allow parents to be with their children during treatments and for many it will be a much better living environment than they’ve ever experienced.”
David Snyder, evening anchor on WCJB TV 20 and media personality, Ilene Silverman will host Keira Grace Foundation’s "Share the Cure 2012: The Results Show,” benefiting pediatric cancer patients in the Dominican Republic. The event begins at 7 p.m. with cocktails and dinner provided by chef Byron Terwillegar, who recently opened his popular Blue Water Bay restaurant in Gainesville. Following the fundraising event, DJ Matt of Innovative Entertainment will host an afterparty at the Squitieri Studio Theatre. Tickets to the event are $89 if purchased in advance, or $99 starting Feb. 6, with childcare available through Gabb’s After School Program. To purchase tickets call the Phillips Center Box Office (352-392-2787) or TicketMaster (800-277-1700 and www.ticketmaster.com). For more information visit: www.keiragracefoundation.com.