A man and his grandson fishing at a pier


Our Mission

Since our program begin, our mission has been to serve children and families from the Upper Peninsula who are battling childhood cancer. We believe that when a child is sick, the entire family is affected. Our support focuses on the individual along with the entire family.

The Childhood Cancer program provides grants to families to minimize the financial hardship that is directly attributable to their child’s diagnosis. This includes needs for travel, medical and household bills.

We rely solely on donations from private benefactors, sponsors, Lions Clubs and other community organizations, foundations and fundraisers. Every dollar earned goes directly to the families and to the programs that serve them.

Our Cause

Lions Clubs International has adopted Childhood Cancer as an initiative on a global level. Each year, more than 300,000 children are diagnosed with cancer across the world.[1] This means that a child is diagnosed with cancer every 2 minute.[1] The Lions have been exploring new ways in which Lions can help children with cancer in our own communities.

Michigan is ranked 5th in the nation for annual number of pediatric cancer diagnoses. 470 children are diagnosed in Michigan each year.[2] Our program has connected with over 70 families in the U.P. The Upper Peninsula has the largest number of children per capita diagnosed with cancer in Michigan.[2] U.P. families face daunting challenges because they must travel out of our area for care. Many times, one parent is forced to take an extended leave of absence or leave a job to be with their child. Medical treatment can go on for many years, leaving kids with physical, emotional, and sensory deficits.

[1]: Statistics from the World Health organization

[2]: Statistics from the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services

Our Statistics

An illustrative chart showing the increase in recognized families over time.

We have seen a rise in the number of families living in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan seeking help with a child battling cancer.

Since our program began in 2020, that number has increased by more than twenty-fold!

An illustrative graph showing the amount of children in Michigan diagnosed with cancer per year.

According to recent figures, 11,000 children in the U.S. were diagnosed with a form of cancer in 2020. Michigan diagnoses approximately 470 children per year with some form of cancer. At any given time there are approximately 2000 children in Michigan battling this dreadful disease.

The Upper Peninsula of Michigan has the largest number of cases diagnosed per capita.

An illustrative graph showing the amount of children in Michigan diagnosed with cancer per year.

Within the past few decades, cancer research has produced promising treatments for pediatric cancer. 60% of children who have had cancer, have lifelong emotional, cognitive, physical, and developmental deficits. The American Cancer Society provides the most recent estimates and statistics for cancer in children in the United States.

Currently in the U.S., the recovery rate for childhood cancer is 84%.

An illustrative graph showing the amount of children in Michigan diagnosed with cancer per year.

The Childhood Cancer program has worked hard and received support from several organizations. Fundraisers and donations have been put on or provided by Tour Da Yoop, Eh; Lions, Graymont, Superior Health Foundation, Meijer, Flagstar, a legacy bequeathment, and other organizations and individuals.

In total, The U.P. Lions Serve Childhood Cancer Program has raised enough funding to support many families in the Upper Peninsula through fundraisers, individual donations, and grants!