Funding Research for a Cure

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Losing a family member to an illness would take a toll on anyone; losing three to cancer can be absolutely devastating. Six of Lauren Aitch’s family members have been diagnosed with cancer, and when her father passed away from an allergic reaction to the medication used to treat his cancer, she decided to take action. Aitch wanted to develop a foundation in her father’s name to help prevent deaths caused by cancer. She sought the advice of one of her former MSU professors to decide what her organization should focus on. From that, the Aitch Foundation was created to focus on raising money to research the early detection of hidden cancers. According to Lauren, the key to beating cancer is to find it in its earliest stages before it begins attacking the body. During the five years that the Aitch Foundation has been in existence, it has received an immense amount of support from the community. The Aitch Foundation’s signature fundraising event, Hidden Key Fashion Show, features former Michigan State athletes, cancer survivors and community leaders and attracts many members of the community who have been affected by cancer. Andre Hutson, Cathy George, Desmond Ferguson and Draymond Green are just a few of the local celebrities who have sashayed down the runway. Between sets, speakers, who are usually cancer survivors, are invited on stage to share their stories of heartbreak and triumph over this disease. Their speeches also provide invaluable information that can help members of the audience who are facing similar situations. The majority of the funds raised help support MSU graduate students whose research focuses on causes and treatments for cancer. The Aitch Foundation partners with MSU Advancement and the MSU Health Researching Department to give students the opportunity to expand their research and make ground-breaking discoveries that could potentially lead to new therapeutic methods of curing cancer. There are two firm principles that Aitch holds when referring to her mission: research and advocacy. The funding that they receive goes toward the research, but the way that they measure success is through the number of people they reach. “The information that people get from the fashion show and our event is educating them” said Aitch. “It allows them to love themselves and ensure growth in their current situation.” The Aitch Foundation also promotes general health by hosting events that provide cancer screenings, health insurance sign-up options and the opportunity to locate a doctor for regular visits. Aside from working with the Foundation, Aitch enjoys helping the people who supported her during her career at Michigan State. “God has always given me the direction that I need, I want to be able to provide the resources so that others can be involved in what they want to do without being held back,” said Aitch. She has always wanted to help people, ever since she was young. It is this desire to bring joy to others and open doors for them that keeps her focused. Lauren stays motivated by working to fulfill God’s plan for each day of her life. For more information about the Aitch Foundation visit aitchfoundation.com
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Tags: cure for cancer, early detection, foundation, loss, msu