Danielle Cathcart started raising money for Wipe Out Kids Cancer (WOKC) when she was about 11 years old. In 1994, Danielle’s five-year-old friend was diagnosed with cancer. She fought hard for two years, but she eventually lost her battle. Danielle and her mother were devastated by the loss and felt that they needed to help other kids. After crying for days, Danielle and her mother decided to do something about it. Danielle stood outside stores handing out fliers and asking for donations.
Although this fundraising was of great benefit to WOKC, it was not enough for Danielle. She mentioned the idea of having a rummage sale to raise money and the idea was a big hit. Friends and people from her school and church were more than happy to donate items to the cause. Danielle would accompany her mother after school to pick up the donations for the sale. The church also donated their parking lot for the sale. The day before the sale, Danielle and her family and friends sorted all of the donated items.
The day of the rummage sale, the parking lot was filled with people. Danielle sold food and tickets for the cakewalk, as well as items for sale. She raised approximately $5,300. The following summer, she prepared for the second sale. That summer she collected about $6,500 for WOKC. Danielle raised enough money with each sale that she was considered one of WOKC’s sponsors. Her work became known as Danielle Cathcart’s Kids for Kids. Her monetary donations were given to researchers at Children’s Hospital where it was used to help find a cure for cancer.
Danielle has touched everyone that she has met through her Kids for Kids organization. People often call and ask her how they can help. Her mother, Cynthia Cathcart, is now the Chairman of the Board for Danielle’s organization. Thanks to Danielle’s efforts, the researchers at Children’s Hospital are $11,800 closer to finding a cure for cancer.
Between sales, Danielle and her mother organize additional fund raisers between sales and they host an annual Halloween party and other outing for young cancer patients at Children’s Medical Center. They recruit volunteers at The Episcopal School of Dallas, where Danielle is a seventh-grader, and at other area schools. They have also taken an active role in getting involved with some younger patients at Children’s as part of Wipe Out Kids’ Cancer.
Danielle has been able to spread joy by involving many of her friends from school and church. The children are now extending their efforts to start auxiliaries at other schools and to organize more volunteers. As the project expands, volunteers plan to add new fundraisers with additional activities with ambassadors – patients at Children’s Hospital who get to go on outings and to parties with well children.