Kids Making a Difference: Grace Callwood, Founder of The We Cancerve Movement

Grace Callwood

Grace Callwood founded The We Cancerve Movement, a non-profit that creates ways for youth to help other children who are homeless, sick, and in foster care. Grace began her work at age 7 following her diagnosis with Stage IV Non- Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. Unable to attend school because of chemotherapy, she donated her new back-to-school clothes to young girls whose family had lost everything in a fire.When she heard of their delight in receiving the gift, she decided to do more to help children in difficult situations.

We are thrilled to have Grace as our Wonder Crate Kid of the Month for November and ask her a few questions about making an impact.

1. What positive impact do you hope to have in the world?
I hope to bring happiness to homeless, sick and foster children and to make sure they know their sad situations are not their fault. I also want to make sure they know they’re not alone. It’s important that they know this so they don’t give up. I want them to always have a reason to smile and have something positive to look back on despite their sad situations. I care because there was a time in my life I felt that my sad situation was my fault. I was confused when I was facing a very serious illness at a very young age and at first, I thought my diagnosis was the result of something I did wrong. The positive impact I want to make on the world is bringing happiness to children in some of the most vulnerable situations: homelessness, in foster care and facing serious illnesses.

2. How are you doing it?
I founded The We Cancerve Movement, a nonprofit organization that is dedicated to bringing happiness and hope to homeless, sick and foster children. Some of the initiatives we’ve created include our Eggstra Special Easter Bag kits that have provided thousands of Easter goodies to children in the hospital and children living in homeless shelters, orphanages and foster care group homes. Camp Happy is a free summer enrichment day camp for homeless and foster youth that offers field trips, guest speakers and themed activities. Our Breakfast Bags Bonanza provide thousands of individual breakfast bags to mostly homeless and foster youth over the Thanksgiving and Winter holidays when they typically receive meals at school.

3. What character traits have been important to achieving your goals?
I’d like to think I am a blend of character traits! My compassion is what drives me to work harder every day so that We Cancerve can make a bigger impact for children we serve. My resilience and determination have helped me conquer some of the challenges that come with starting a nonprofit organization at such a young age. I’ve been invited to serve alongside adults for other causes, and my skills were often underused because of my age, but I never let that keep me from voicing my opinion. And, finally, I never lose my sense of optimism and enthusiasm for “what’s next.” There is always more we can do for children, and while I am very proud of what we have been able to accomplish so far with We Cancerve. I know that we are just getting started!

Click here to watch her video.

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