Cancer might be nasty business, but it is business. Indeed it costs the US alone some $130 Billion each year and for sufferers themselves, a typical four rounds of chemotherapy can cost up to $50,000 — more than the average annual salary. Hundreds of millions are donated to various charities, which unfortunately have to use a large percentage of contributions (up to 90%) to fund their own existence, meaning that much doesn’t reach the intended recipients. The fact that over 17 million new cases of cancer were reported in 2018 alone, and that the odds of someone developing the disease in their lifetime is now at a concerning 50%, it’s easy to start seeing the issue as a statistic and forgetting the impact it has on the individual.
This is where CURE comes in.
The Decentralized DeFi token was launched in September of 2021, by Jacob Beckley, philanthropist and chairman of the non-profit charity, The Beckley Foundation. The project has the noble and sole goal of helping to eradicate first pediatric cancer, and then other forms as it grows. Even in its infancy the project has been a resounding success, raising its market-cap to a current All-Time-high of $15 million in just under four weeks and donating over $100,000 to smaller research facilities and actual sufferers themselves. It aims to shine a spotlight on both these aspects of the disease and its treatment, turning them from the abstract into something tangible that we can all rally behind.
The first of these elements being highlighted in this new series of articles by the project is the story of Lukas, a four-year-old Leukemia sufferer from Chicago who has spent the majority of his young life in and out of the hospital. His mother, Nicole explains how despite his extreme sickness, he is “the happiest person [she] has ever met” and is armed with a “contagious smile.” He is theatrical and comical, and “loves an audience to watch him do silly things.” He loves his family fiercely and has a huge heart, as well as being wise beyond his years. To those who don’t know, to look at it him it would be almost impossible to tell that he is battling something as devastating as cancer. Lukas tries not to let the illness get to him, doing normal things a four-year-old should be doing, like swimming, riding his bike and scooter, playing with his toys, as well as putting on a show for anyone willing to watch, be it singing or dancing. He also has a close bond with his older brother Jakob, who cares for him as if he were his own child.
However, despite all the positivity in Lukas’ home, Nicole admits how cancer looms large like a shadow in their lives. She and her husband “struggle with maintaining normalcy,” when so much of their time not working is devoted to taking Lukas to doctor’s appointments and for treatment. “We haven’t even taken a family vacation,” she says.
The nightmare for Nicole started when at 21 months old, she found pin-dot red marks on Lucas’ neck and stomach. Concerned doctors did blood-work and discovered that he had acute lymphoblastic leukemia. As she puts it, what was meant to be fun life of playing and exploring as a toddler “turned into a fight for his life. We had to put his childhood on hold to engage in a war he didn’t ask to join.”
Lukas started treatment straight away. For the first six months he faced the most difficult part of the process — frontline Leukemia treatment. He had to go to the local clinic every week for intravenous chemotherapy and to the hospital for painful spinal taps and surgeries. It was a difficult and traumatic time for the family, who all put on a brave face and marched forward, doing whatever needed to be done to save Lukas. Thankfully, the strong little boy passed through this ordeal and entered into the maintenance stage of his treatment. This involves taking oral chemo treatments every day and a round of spinal taps and IV chemo every three months. “He is currently still in the tail-end of the three year maintenance stage,” explains Nicole, “and if all goes to plan means we have 375 days left.” This would mean that Lukas would be finished with his treatment just days before his fifth birthday — a landmark that the family will be a cause for extra celebrations!
“We are all proud of Lukas, he is our strong cancer warrior.”
Jacob found out about the incredible story of Lukas through the boy’s schoolteacher who is a friend of his own wife. Immediately he knew that the recently launched CURE Token was the exact vehicle to help the Voelz family. He set aside part of the initial $70,000 raised through transaction fees built in to the token’s contract and set about organizing a week long all-expenses-paid trip to Disney World Florida, which will take place as soon as Lukas finishes his final round of treatment, as a little treat for the brave boy. As Jacob explains, when he called Nicole to tell them what CURE was going to do, they were overwhelmed. “It was shock and awe,” he says with a laugh. “Nicole was in shock and Lukas was in awe. He was stunned at the thought of going on a trip to Disney. He loves it — apparently Toy Story 2 is his favorite film. It was such a great feeling to be able to do something so great for a family who thoroughly deserve it, and none of it would be possible if it wasn’t for CURE Token and its amazing community. Really it’s them that Lukas and his lovely family have to thank.
Lukas is just one of millions of children suffering from leukemia worldwide. Fortunately due to pioneering research, the 5-year survival rate is now 90%. Still that means that 10% of all children suffering aren’t as fortunate as Lukas has been, and sadly succumb to the disease. This is why what CURE is attempting to do is so important and could potentially lead to many more children being saved, whilst also giving as many of them as possible reasons to smile.
Now that is a cause worth investing in.
This article was written by Stuart Meczes. Please note that Stuart is not a financial advisor and nothing written in this article should be taken as financial advice.