Driving Innovative Research and Fighting for the Future Every Child Deserves
By Sarah Ford on June 10, 2015
Childhood cancer remains the leading cause of death by disease among children in the United States. Every day, 43 children are diagnosed with cancer and the average age of diagnosis is 6. Cancer Research for Children - CureSearch funds and supports targeted and innovative children's cancer research with measurable results, and is the authoritative source of information and resources for all those affected by childhood cancer. In this post, Dr. Sarita Sastry, Senior Manager, Research and Programs at CureSearch shares her role in helping CureSearch fight for the future every child deserves.
Q&A With Sarita K. Sastry, PhD:
What attracted you to this job & particular cause?
I cannot remember a time in my life when I was not compelled by cancer research. I joined CureSearch for Children’s Cancer in March 2015 as the Senior Manager, Research and Programs. Prior to joining CureSearch for Children’s Cancer, I was a faculty member at an academic medical institution where I taught cancer biology and ran a cancer research lab. I was attracted to CureSearch for a number of reasons. I was looking for a change from academia but knew I had to continue to contribute to cancer research. I knew I wanted an opportunity to expand my professional skills and professional network by working for a non-profit organization. My new position at CureSearch allows me to tap into my expertise in cancer research to assist the scientists with whom we partner and raise awareness for children’s cancer – the leading cause of death by disease among children. The opportunity to be part of life-saving work by driving innovative research is so important to me. In my opinion, CureSearch is doing it better than anyone else.
How are you making an impact through your work?
The biggest impact I can make is to help CureSearch select and drive the very best research in pediatric oncology. I also make sure that donors and parents understand the research and can see how their charitable gifts to CureSearch make an impact.
What advice would you give to anyone with a similar position, or to someone interested in working for a nonprofit like yours?
Working for a nonprofit organization is a new and enlightening experience for me. It is opening up new avenues for my career. I was encouraged by others who took a similar path. I would definitely recommend working for a nonprofit to anyone looking to make a career change or to contribute to a cause that fuels their passion.
What excites you most about your organization’s work right now?
It is a critical time in the research community because traditional government sources of funding are limited. For scientists to move their ideas forward into cures that reach children, new ideas and ways of working are needed. CureSearch is leading the way by raising money and driving innovation. As a member of the CureSearch team, I can contribute to the future of children’s cancer research.
Our thanks to Dr. Sarita for sharing her time and expertise with us! To learn more about the impact CureSearch for Children's Cancer is making, click here to visit their website and connect with them @CureSearch on Facebook, Twitter and other social networks.
The primary goal for any nonprofit is to get people to support that nonprofit’s cause so they can make an impact. But, behind each of those causes are hard-working individuals, actively involved in making that impact happen. Through our Making Impact Blog Series, we’re going behind the scenes with America’s Charities member organizations to learn how they’re making impact happen and share insights and advice from the staff and volunteers supporting these initiatives.