St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital is one of the world’s premier pediatric research institutions, treating children with cancer and other pediatric diseases free of charge while searching for cures.
Entertainer Danny Thomas opened St. Jude on February 4, 1962. Envisioning a hospital that would treat children regardless of race, color, creed, or their family’s ability to pay, Thomas dedicated his life to ensuring that, as he put it, “no child [would] die in the dawn of life.” When St. Jude opened, the survival rate for the most common childhood cancer, acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL), was four percent. By 1972, it was 50%. In 2006, the survival rate for ALL reached 94%. Treatment and research developed at St. Jude played a vital role in this dramatic increase.
Over the years, the programs at St. Jude expanded to include research and treatment for sickle cell anemia, pediatric AIDS, and other hereditary disorders, resulting in more effective therapies and better survival rates.
Importantly, families of patients at St. Jude do not incur any costs for treatment, travel, or accommodation during their stay. St. Jude believes that families should be allowed to focus on helping their child live.
PGDF founder Peter Dodge has been a longtime supporter of St. Jude, with donations and sponsorships pre-dating the existence of PGDF. In 2014, PGDF’s inaugural year, Peter worked with the West Virginia chapter of St. Jude/ ALSAC to host the PGDF St. Jude Golf Invitational at the Greenbrier resort, which raised over $270,000.
In 2017, PGDF’s Community Grants program supported the St. Jude Gourmet Gala, held February 28th at the National Building Museum in Washington, DC. As one of St. Jude/ ALSAC’s cornerstone annual fundraising events, the Gourmet Gala raised $1,180,000 to support patients and families.
The mission of the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital is to advance cures, and means of prevention, for pediatric catastrophic diseases through research and treatment. PGDF is proud to have donated in support of their lifesaving work.