In 1998, Hyundai and a group of New England-area dealers committed to the fight against pediatric cancer by launching a local initiative to support the Jimmy Fund at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. This activity grew to become Hope On Wheels, a program that has been transforming the lives of children across the nation. Hyundai Hope On Wheels, a national independent 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, is committed to finding a cure for childhood cancer. Hyundai Motor America and its more than 800 U.S. Hyundai dealers and customers proudly provide their support.
You may be shocked to discover that less than 4% of federal research funding for cancer is designated for pediatrics. Without necessary funding, these young patients are left without a voice. Hyundai Hope On Wheels was established to fill that void and “Give Hope a Hand!”
Every time a new Hyundai vehicle is sold in the U.S., Hyundai customers join Hyundai and its dealers in our cause. Between 1998 and 2012, we have donated more than $58 million to pediatric cancer research in the United States.
The Hyundai Scholar Grant program began in 2006. Each year we visit children’s hospitals across the U.S. to donate funds and raise awareness. At every grant presentation a “Handprint Ceremony” takes place. This is the program’s signature activity, which captures each child’s handprint. These handprints are placed on Hyundai cars that travel across the country to build colorful awareness of the program.
Why handprints? Because there is nothing more personal than a handprint, each is distinctive in its own way. Whether it's completing a round of chemo, celebrating a beautiful new head of hair or receiving a clean bill of health, one child’s milestone can be another's symbol of hope. And these handprints serve as our symbol.
In 2010, we expanded our program in recognition of National Childhood Cancer Awareness Month (September). We created a new grant category called the Hyundai Hope Grant, a competitively selected two-year $250,000 award. Recipients of the Hope Grant are selected from the nation’s best and brightest institutions. In just three short years, these Hope Grants have already funded incredible research projects. Many of these projects have led to the discovery of new treatments for children. Our largest grant project funded to date is an award to the Children’s Hospital of Orange County (CHOC). This is a 5-year research grant for $10 million to pursue innovations in pediatric genomics research.
Now as we reach our 15-year anniversary, we mark this occasion with a number of activities to extend what has been achieved thus far. In 2013, we will award additional grant dollars and create greater awareness for the disease. Our goal is to surpass $72 million by year’s end. And, we invite you to join our journey and help spread the word through your direct participation, personal involvement and social media activities to further awareness.