Bakersfield group raises funds, awareness for pediatric cancer

BAKERSFIELD - A local family who lost their little girl to pediatric cancer started non-profit called Second Star To The Right. The organization was set up to not only raise funds for research, but to also assist local and regional families with emotional and financial support.

Second Star to the Right was originally founded in January of 2010 by Briana Schechter and her sister Rachelle Griffith.

Rachelle's daughter, Kayla Blair, was diagnosed with a rare form of brain cancer known as AT/RT at the tender age of 21 months old and was treated at St. Jude's Children's Hospital in Memphis, Tennessee. Sadly, she lost her battle on January 10, 2009.

"When a child is diagnosed with cancer, the entire family is affected by their devastating diagnosis. Schedules are rearranged, siblings displaced, finances thrown out the window and travel is most likely a must," said Belen Carrasco, mother of Pediatric Cancer Angel, Ylaria.

The nonprofit is currently assisting 10 local families with varying pediatric cancers, treatment and treatment facilities throughout California.

The group is currently holding a fundraiser called Paint the Town Gold selling T-shirt, not only raise funds for their tax exempt non-profit, but to more importantly raise awareness for Pediatric Cancer as a whole. The shirts are $20.

Watching Kayla fight so hard against this devastating disease gave Rachelle, Briana, and other members of their family the strength to continue fighting for other helpless children like Kayla. Though Kayla lost her battle at only 27 months old, her family felt an overwhelming obligation to fight back against childhood cancer in every way possible.

For information about their campaign or to learn more about the organization: www.secondstartotheright.org

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