The mission of the Richard David Kann Melanoma Foundation is to educate the community about the prevention and early detection of skin cancer, especially melanoma.
Dear 16-Year Old Me
One person dies from melanoma every fifty minutes, one out of every fifty people are at risk for melanoma, and Florida is the state with the second highest incidence of melanoma in the country. Melanoma is the only cancer that is increasing each year, while all others are decreasing. We can significantly reduce the number of people who die from this disease that is 100% preventable: if we educate our community.
SunSmart America™ curriculum in schools, is the core program of the Richard David Kann Melanoma Foundation, it is the only curriculum that educates students from kindergarten through twelfth grade. The Foundation has trained students, teachers, school nurses, parents and school administrators nationwide, thus facilitating the development of new sun safety programs and resources. Sunshine State and FCAT approved, we have gained the support of the school Superintendents, their teaching body and staff.
Students Against Melanoma (SAM) is the Foundation’s peer-based club in middle and high schools. This club started in 2007 and has grown, as new clubs emerge yearly this unique opportunity for students has helped us win one of our thirteen American Academy of Dermatology Gold Triangle Awards in 2010. This is a critical time for children to acquired knowledge that will help them to create good habits that will serve them throughout their adult lives.
All middle and high schools should have a SAM Club. Our model allows students to receive community service hours. Clubs meet as often as they wish, but at least once a month they gather to create events for their school, and to partner with the Foundation, in honor of Melanoma Awareness Month in May. SAM members attend community events, carrying forth our Foundation’s mission, as well as being ambassadors of good health and sun safe information.
Also recognized during Melanoma Awareness Month, is our Melanoma Monday Art Contest in Schools, celebrated throughout the county. We have been implementing this program since 2001, with first place awards as great as Sun Shades for schools and other prizes. The event culminates in a well-attended award ceremony, filled with fun and awareness. It is our desire to make this a statewide program in the near future, one of our many efforts to make Florida the “Sun Safe” Sunshine State. Be sure to watch for your School District invitation to participate next spring, it is a great learning experience for all.
The 2012-2013 school year presents many opportunities for the Melanoma Foundation; we are seeking community leaders and partners that share our mission, who want to help us get our message out faster and wider. The Melanoma Foundation wishes to bring greater awareness of the dangers incurred by the use of “indoor tanning beds” and welcomes everyone to visit the website to sign the “No Tanning Pledge”. You will also find instructions for an efficient and thorough way to examine oneself for possible skin cancer, as well as many resources, events, volunteer opportunities, and the latest news regarding skin cancer, melanoma, legislation, and the likes.
Thank you to the District’s Wellness Promotion Task Force, for partnering with the Melanoma Foundation for a safer and better life for our children and the community.
For more information, visit the Richard David Kann Melanoma Foundation website.