When a parent takes a sick child to the pediatrician they are thinking, cold, virus, bacteria. The last thing on their mind is Cancer.

Once a child is diagnosed with any form of cancer the journey is quite emotional. This is your child, your life. You cannot take their pain away but you sure wish you could make it all better for them.

The biggest frustration is not knowing the cause. How did it happen? Can we change the way we do things, should we move, do we stop buying certain foods. What is it? How can I assure that we are being good caregivers, have we done our best?

These concerns were on my mind when our 3 year old son was diagnosed with Leukemia. As a parent I felt flustered for not having any control. No control over the illness and no control over the side effects. But I had to do something so I trained for 3 half marathons with Team in Training and raised money for the cause. But that was not enough for me and that is when I looked into the moments when our son was the happiest. It was when he was creating art in the hospital therapy room, in the hospital preschool, at home and at summer camp. The year I kept him home and away from preschool is when I realized that art truly was therapeutic.

Hence, I tapped into my design background and reached out to fellow artists with the help of two of my wonderful friends, Caroline Low and Helen McNamara. Together we created Kids & Art.

Our mission is to team-up kids and families who have been touched by cancer with local Artists. Together they create art which is later auctioned. The proceeds from these auctions go back in the program and to other cancer charities.

Being a cancer family myself, I know how stressful life has been. I also know how uncertain life is on a day-to-day basis. Art has been an outlet, an escape and that is what we want Kids & Art to do for the children, their families, and their carecircle.

After six years of battling cancer, my son Amaey passed away in September 2011 at the age of 9. Through Kids & Art, Amaey’s artwork has a lasting and powerful message of courage and spirit. My hope is that Kids & Art will create healing, a sense of peace and lasting memories for every family touched by cancer.

Whether we like it or not, kids do get cancer. We might not be able to take their cancer away but we can definitely be there for them through their journey. We hope you will support the cause.

Thank you,
Purvi Shah