THE STORY BEHIND ZERO FACE FOUNDATION, INC.
On Thursday, July 16, 2020, 4-year-old Benjamin, was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL). Learning that our spunky, silly, and fun-loving little boy had ALL was soul-crushing. Since that day, our faithful and loving village has stepped up to provide support to our family in unimaginable ways so that we could focus on Ben's treatment.
Ben achieved remission and is about two years into treatment with less than two months of treatment to go. While we still have bad days, and days of worry and stress, we continue to marvel at Ben's bravery and fight, and are consistently reminded that we are not alone in this battle.
Inspired by Ben's fighting spirit, and the outpouring of all the love and support that we received, we founded Zero Face Foundation, Inc.
The term “Zero Face” is based on the Wong Baker FACES Pain Rating Scale. A “Zero Face” means you are in no pain.
Leading up to Ben’s diagnosis and thereafter, we found ourselves communicating often to Ben in “Faces”. What Face are you today? Are you a 4? 6? 0?
One day in July 2020, just before receiving Ben's diagnosis, Ben told his dad that he was going to be a Zero Face by Easter. We naively tried to assure Ben that he would be a Zero Face long before Easter. Certainly, he would be a Zero Face in time to celebrate the many holidays that could come before Easter.
After receiving Ben's diagnosis and as his treatment plan unfolded, we learned that Ben would complete the most intense phases of his treatment just before Easter, at which time he would begin a less intense phase of treatment known as Maintenance.
From that point on, the goal was to get through the intense phases of treatment, by Easter. To Ben, it meant becoming a Zero Face by Easter. It was the motivation on Ben's toughest days and gave him something to look forward to. A seemingly end in sight.
Ben is still in the maintenance phase of treatment and is counting the days until he completes treatment and rings the bell in September 2022. While no family wishes for this journey, we have found that if you look for the silver linings, you will find them.
As our family thought through what we could do to help other patients and families in similar situations, and what our goals would be, our mission it became obvious - to provide support to children fighting the cancer battle (and their families) on their journey to becoming a Zero Face once again.
Zero Face Foundation’s goals are to provide emotional, physical, financial and logistical support to pediatric cancer patients, their families and caregivers. Examples of assistance that Zero Face Foundation is able to provide with your assistance are:
· Gas cards for those who might not otherwise make it to treatment. Some patients commute across the state for treatment
Assisting with the cost of medicine.
· Childcare costs for other children when a parent must be away for their child’s cancer treatment.
· Food and grocery gift cards to help with new diets and everchanging taste preferences caused by the chemotherapy.
· Gift cards, in general, to help pay for miscellaneous expenses incurred when funds are low as a result of missed workdays or sacrificed paychecks.
Help us help the little warriors on their journey to becoming a Zero Face again!
It is a funny name but serious business!