Forest Hills group raises funds for pediatric cancer research

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The Shop Forest Hills Fall Festival on Austin Street on September 8 featured food, rides, crafts, and a wide range of merchandise and services, offering something for everyone. It is organized annually by the Forest Hills Chamber of Commerce.

One vendor was the Forest Hills Women Helping Women (WHW) bake sale, where over $1,500 was raised for Cookies for Kids’ Cancer (CFKC), a nonprofit that support pediatric cancer research. The effort was the result of the hard work of over 20 local volunteers.

Cancer is the leading cause of death for children nationwide, with more than 40,000 children in America actively battling some form of the disease. According to CFKC, less than four percent of the National Cancer Institute’s budget is used to study childhood cancer, making it essential to volunteer and contribute.

“Volunteering is very rewarding,” said Rego Park resident Ivy Hammer. “I am a huge champion of children’s causes. The world could not exist without volunteers.”

Forest Hills resident Jaime Kobin serves as event coordinator and has volunteered with CFKC since its origins 11 years ago.

“I am grateful to WHW for their support of this deeply personal cause,” she said. “CFKC provides tons of support for anyone who wants to host an event. Cookies can also be purchased online, which are great for corporate gifts, birthdays, and as a thank you.”

There are numerous ways to make a difference. Kobin suggested hosting an event in a school, religious site or athletic field, organizing a 5K run, or just placing a basket of cookies with a donation jar on a desk at work.

“It’s not only about the money that was raised, but our goal of spreading awareness and inspiring others to venture out in the world and help,” added Kobin.

For many volunteers, including Kobin, the cause is personal. The brother of her college roommate passed away from pediatric cancer.

“I know the family who started the charity,” she said. “Their son passed away at age six, I recall planning his fifth birthday party.

“A couple of days ago, I got off the phone with a Queens-based client whose daughter is undergoing chemo and was diagnosed before age two,” Kobin added. “I also know a local child who recently completed his treatment. When I tell you the money matters, it does, since treatments that were unavailable 11 years ago when the organization was founded are saving lives today.”

Kobin’s family set an example for her early in her life by helping others.

“My parents took me to community and charity events for a variety of causes,” she said. “Even when they faced financial challenges, they still gave their time. As an adult, helping others is a big part of my identity.”

To volunteer or donate, visit

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