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Reds join childhood cancer awareness efforts

September 22, 2020

Major League Baseball, the Cincinnati Reds and the Starlight Children’s Foundation have teamed up this September to support and bring attention to Childhood Cancer Awareness Month. Once again in 2020, MLB has spearheaded a league-wide effort to raise awareness for childhood cancer, which remains the leading cause of death by

Major League Baseball, the Cincinnati Reds and the Starlight Children’s Foundation have teamed up this September to support and bring attention to Childhood Cancer Awareness Month.

Once again in 2020, MLB has spearheaded a league-wide effort to raise awareness for childhood cancer, which remains the leading cause of death by disease among children in the United States and Canada. This year, more than 11,000 children in the United States under the age of 15 will be diagnosed with cancer. In its partnership with Stand Up To Cancer, MLB is committed to eradicating the diseases that these brave young children face every day.

One of the relationships MLB has is with Starlight Children’s Foundation. As a part of Childhood Cancer Awareness Month this month, 15 ballclubs were selected to receive team-logoed “Starlight Brave Gowns,” with the Reds being one of them. Through this partnership, 100 Reds-branded hospital gowns were donated to Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center (CCHMC). These gowns replaced existing hospital garments with high quality, comfortable gowns for children to wear while undergoing treatment.

“We are grateful for this generous gift and for the precious smiles it brought to our patients’ faces,” said Tricia Heider, who works in CCHMC’s Department of Child Life. “The Reds-branded gowns are so soft and comfortable, and it is a simple way for our patients to connect to and support our hometown team.”

For the fifth consecutive year, MLB pushed this initiative to the forefront by dedicating Sept. 5 as Childhood Cancer Awareness Day. When the Reds played at Pittsburgh that day, players, managers, coaches, umpires and other on-field personnel wore a gold ribbon decal on the left chest of their uniforms, and many of them also donned gold wristbands during the game. In addition, commemorative base jewels and lineup cards were featured.

In previous years when Childhood Cancer Awareness Day was held on a date when the Reds played at home, efforts have included special batting practice T-shirts worn by players, player visits to meet with cancer patients at CCHMC, Reds gear donations and hosting Make-A-Wish visits at the ballpark for children with cancer. This year, activities implemented by home teams across the league included national anthem performances by childhood cancer patients, pregame videoboard messages, childhood cancer survivors saying “Play Ball” before first pitch, cardboard cutouts of childhood cancer patients being placed in the stands and virtual meet and greets between players and childhood cancer patients.

A founding donor of Stand Up To Cancer, Major League Baseball and its 30 clubs have pledged more than $50 million in financial support and in-kind assets to support SU2C’s cancer research programs. As September rolls on, please join Major League Baseball and the Cincinnati Reds in the fight against childhood cancer. Visit MLBCommunity.org to learn more.