Student Features

PA Cyber student lands donation for Genre’s Kids with Cancer Fund

Feb 1, 2017

Families whose children are newly diagnosed with cancer and admitted to Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC will receive more backpacks of essentials needed for a lengthy hospital stay, thanks to the efforts of PA Cyber junior Kayleah Beedon.  

Beedon, who interns with the organization, was instrumental in getting PA Cyber’s curriculum provider to donate 30 backpacks, or “Go Bags,” to Genre’s Kids with Cancer Fund. The donation was made following Beedon’s letter requesting help to two PA Cyber educators.

Based in Irwin, Pa., Genre’s Kids with Cancer Fund is a 501(c) (3) nonprofit committed to assisting families battling childhood cancers. The organization was started by the parents of Genre Baker, who was just 8 years old when he was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia on Memorial Day in 2009.

Daunette Baker, Genre’s mother and president of the organization, said Lincoln Learning Solutions’ donation will provide two months of help to cancer parents. Genre’s Kids supplies each newly diagnosed family with a Go Bag filled with essential supplies and toiletries.

“We are so thankful for the donation of 30 Go Bags. These Go Bags provide the desperate parent who has just heard the words, ‘Your child has cancer,’ with all the necessities they will need to get through the next several days or weeks.  The parents don’t have time to think about themselves, so — hopefully — we have put together all the supplies they need to do so,” Baker said.

PA Cyber educators Mike Bariski and Marc Grandinetti acted as liaisons for Beedon, because they viewed her plea as a worthwhile approach to helping parents during their time of need; Genre’s Kids’ mission to provide parents of children diagnosed with cancer some relief during their hospital stay is one they knew PA Cyber and Lincoln Learning Solutions would embrace.

Go Bags contain items such as shampoo and conditioner, lotion, a hair brush, disposable razors, men’s and women’s deodorant, toothbrushes, toothpaste, body wash, pens, pain reliever, and adult socks — everything a parent would need to get through their long hospital stays.

Genre’s Kids delivers 12 to 15 backpacks each month to oncology social workers, who are the first point of contact with families after diagnosis.

Kayleah initially approached Daunette Baker with the idea to solicit a donation of Go Bags from her school. Baker’s son Genre is a personal friend of Kayleah.

“Many families aren’t prepared when their child is diagnosed and admitted,” Kayleah said. “These bags include items that a family would need for their initial first stay at the hospital.”  




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About PA Cyber

Serving students in kindergarten through 12th grade, the Pennsylvania Cyber Charter School (PA Cyber) is one of the largest, most experienced, and most successful online public schools in the nation. PA Cyber's online learning environments, personalized instructional methods, and choices of curricula connect Pennsylvania students and their families with state-certified and highly-qualified teachers, and rich academic content that is aligned to state standards. Founded in 2000, PA Cyber is headquartered in Midland (Beaver County) and maintains a network of support offices throughout the state. As a public school, PA Cyber is open for enrollment by any school-age child residing in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, and does not charge tuition to students or families.