Westborough family receives donation from Cops for Kids with Cancer
By Valerie Franchi, Contributing Writer
Westborough – Westborough resident Helen Parker got a welcome surprise earlier this month when she and her son Ndubuissi Iweka, 6, received a $5,000 award from Cops for Kids with Cancer. The check was presented Oct. 15 at the Westborough Police headquarters by Robert Faherty, chair of the Braintree-based organization.
Ndubuissi, called “N.D.,” was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia almost exactly a year ago, on Oct. 18, 2012. According to single mother Parker, N.D. missed his last year of school at Hastings Elementary while receiving treatment at Tufts Medical Center in Boston. He is now back at school in Kindergarten, but still undergoes treatment monthly.
Parker has two other children, ages 13 and 10, and the gift will help with medical treatment and daily expenses for the family.
Westborough Police Chief Alan Gordon alerted Parker of the news her family was receiving an award, “but I didn’t tell her there was any money with it,” he said. “That was a surprise.”
N.D. also received small gifts, including a blanket made by a volunteer, a hat, and a stuffed bear.
Cops for Kids with Cancer is an all-volunteer, nonprofit organization that raises money through fundraisers, often held by local police departments.
“The minute we mention kids, people are so generous,” Gordon said. “Instead of dollar bills, we are getting 20s.”
According to Faherty, N.D. was recommended as a grant recipient through the hospital. “We contact hospitals throughout New England for candidates,” he said. “There are nine awards this month.”
Faherty is the former superintendent-in-chief of the Boston Police Department. The organization was founded by his longtime friend and colleague John Dow, a retired police captain and cancer survivor, who wanted to help families affected by cancer. In the past four years, Cops for Kids with Cancer has helped 157 families with more than $1 million in grants.
For more information, visit copsforkidswithcancer.org.
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