Frequently Asked Questions

Find answers to the most common questions we’re asked about the Tatum Parker Project and pediatric cancer.

How widespread is childhood cancer?

Childhood cancer is the number one disease killer of children in the U.S. The average age of a child diagnosed with cancer is 6.

What are the health outcomes of kids with childhood cancer? How widespread is childhood cancer?

In 80% of kids with cancer, the cancer has already spread to other areas of the body by the time it is diagnosed. At present, one in five children diagnosed with cancer in the U.S. will not survive. For those that do survive, because of the treatments they had as kids, by the time they’re in their 30s or 40s, more than 95% of childhood cancer survivors will have a chronic health problem and 80% will have severe or life- threatening conditions.

How many kids in Indiana are diagnosed with childhood cancer? 

On average, nearly 350 Indiana children are diagnosed with a form of cancer annually. In 2016. that number was 378.

When and why did you start Bags of Fun?

When Tatum was first diagnosed with Ewing’s Sarcoma at the age of 6 in 2006 she received a Bag of Fun from the Gabby Krause Foundation in Colorado. The Parkers were so inspired by the generosity of many and by the Bag of Fun they reached out to the Krause family about bringing Bags of Fun to Indiana. After Tatum completed her fight they began Tatum’s Bags of Fun in August 2008. Since then Tatum has delivered nearly 3,000 Bags of Fun to Indiana children.

How many Bags of Fun have been delivered?

Each year we deliver approximately 350 Bags of Fun to Hoosier children battling cancer. That’s 30 Bags of Fun per month. Since 2008 we have delivered nearly 3,000 Bags of Fun.

What’s in a Bag of Fun?

It depends! Every Bag of Fun includes a Kindle Fire, but the rest of the contents are specially chosen based on information we receive from the hospital – usually the patient’s gender and age. We include goodies that can be enjoyed from a hospital bed, such as board and card games, crafts, puzzles, and coloring books.

How much does it cost to put together a Bag of Fun?

Each Bag of Fun costs $350. That includes the bag itself, which the patient also gets to keep.

How can I help?

The best way to help us deliver more Bags of Fun is through a monetary donation, or by donating items we can include in the bags. We gladly accept new, unopened toys, crafts, and other fun items in their original packaging. That part is really important since the bags are going to hospitals – we want to protect patients’ immune systems!

You can also sign up to volunteer at the White Party, our annual gala. At the White Party, we need volunteer help with registration and setup.

Get more ideas for how individuals, groups, and corporations can support the Tatum Parker Project by visiting the Get Involved section of our site.

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