MINNEAPOLIS / ST. PAUL, Minn. -- March 4, 2012
Florida State University head football coach Jimbo Fisher, and his wife Candi, today presented the University of Minnesota Amplatz Children’s Hospital with a $500,000 donation from their Kidz1stFund™. The Fisher family presented the check at half court during the University of Minnesota’s men’s basketball game versus Nebraska. University of Minnesota President Eric Kaler, Rebecca Kill, wife of University of Minnesota head football coach, Jerry Kill, and Minnesota Vikings quarterback, and former FSU player, Christian Ponder joined the Fishers for the presentation.
“One thing our family has learned is the game of life is not so different than the game of football – we will not accept defeat,” Candi Fisher said. “We are in this to win the fight against Fanconi anemia on behalf of all the children who share this struggle with Ethan. This is just the first of millions we hope to raise to advance FA research here at the University of Minnesota.”
Kidz1stFund™ was established to support Fanconi anemia research at the University of Minnesota, one of the leading universities pioneering better ways to treat the disorder that afflicts the Fisher’s six-year-old son Ethan. Ethan was diagnosed with Fanconi anemia in March 2011 which prompted the Fisher family to create Kidz1stFund in hopes of finding a cure for this disease.
“The University of Minnesota is thrilled to have such passionate partners in the Kidz1stFund™ and we’ll do what we can to help them achieve their mission,” said MacMillan. “Raising awareness of Fanconi anemia will help in quicker diagnosis and better treatment options for the thousands of kids affected by this disease.”
Fanconi anemia is a rare, inherited blood disorder that prevents bone marrow from making enough new blood cells. Most children affected by the condition will need a transplant of stem cells derived either from bone marrow, or umbilical cord blood to extend their lives. Because of this, Kidz1stFund has orchestrated many bone marrow donor drives in Tallahassee and beyond through a partnership with Be The Match®. In only six months, Kidz1stFund has registered over 1,000 new donors into the National Marrow Donor Program. Many FSU sports teams and Seminole fans have registered to see if they are a match for Ethan or the thousands of others waiting for a bone marrow transplant. Within the last 15 years, new research and improvements have allowed the survival rate after an unrelated donor bone marrow transplant to go from less than 30 percent to greater than 80 percent.
Kidz1stFund™ was established to provide support to families affected by FA, provide education and awareness about the disease, and raise money for Fanconi anemia research with the goal of finding a cure. Through different events, campaigns, and donations, the fund is enthused to be presenting the first installment of $500,000 to further this important research.
To find out more information about Kidz1stFund, visit www.kidz1stfund.com.