Last year one of my very best friends and I did a 140 mile bicycle ride by ourselves from Cardon Children's Hospital in Mesa, AZ down to Tucson and Beads of Courage headquarters. It was the hardest ride either of us had ever done.
I called it Carol's Challenge and raised enough funding for Team Beads of Courage to carry 90 beads for kids in treatment. I sent in those beads each with their own story postcard and then life went on as it always seems to do.
Jean Baruch recently gave a little fellow in treatment one of my Team Beads in a Washington hospital and she told me that he immediately called it "my Carol Bead". Wow. It made every dusty, bumpy, hot and lonely mile on the road to Tucson worth it. My strength and love is now with him every day during his fight with maybe the hardest challenge he will ever face.
I encourage all of you to check out Team Beads of Courage and ride your bike, walk, run, swim, hike, triathalon, ski, sled dog or dance your heart out for those kids. Carry some beads to let them know you're out there and you care. It is one of the best feelings you will ever have when someday, you connect with the child who is wearing your bead and know that it means a lot to them.