Jacob, age 7 and his sister, Julia age 3

 A family trip to the pumpkin patch at this beautiful time of year creates a treasured memory for many like Jacob and his family.

We take time to warm ourselves with hot apple cider while looking for the next great pumpkin canvas. The fun is only beginning. We then get to take our pumpkin home, hollow out the inside, roast its seeds, and get to work on etching out our next masterpiece. On Halloween, as children parade through neighborhoods in their favorite costumes trick or treating for candy; we illuminate our porches, brightly shining our most decorative creations.
Friends of Karen continues to shine bright
Jacob was first diagnosed with cancer in 2015 at the age of 3. He underwent a two year treatment for Optic Glioma, a type of brain tumor affecting his vision. Jacob celebrated many milestones during that period, including starting kindergarten. Friends of Karen played an important role by providing for household expenses and travel needs due to his parents' loss of income when Jacob was being treated. Unfortunately, a recurrence of cancer was discovered in August 2019. Jacob’s mom called Friends of Karen right away after learning of his relapse. Friends of Karen is right back with the family assisting with travel and emotional support through our sibling support program.

This Halloween join us in creating “Jacob’s Lantern” to symbolize your support for all children battling a life-threatening illness. As a demonstration of your support, we’re asking you, as part of our Friends of Karen community, to share your wonderful pumpkin creations and costumes with us on social media using the hashtags #jacobslantern #friendsofkaren. 

We are forever grateful for you, our foundation of supporters who have positioned us to meet the needs of Jacob’s family and the families of more than 300 critically-ill children Friends of Karen is supporting this month alone.

Judy Factor
Executive Director


Please forward this message along to as many creative friends as you have encouraging others to show their support as well. There are many ways you may further help families like Jacob’s. We are pleased to share these additional opportunities (noted below) with you.
Feed a Family for Thanksgiving
A gift of $100 will help feed a family of 4 this Thanksgiving. 
You can also donate gift cards for ShopRite, Stop&Shop, Key Food, Target, Walmart, Amazon, Trader Joe's, Fairway, Visa or MasterCard to Friends of Karen to distribute to our families. 
You can mail or drop off gift cards to Friends of Karen or make a cash donation for our Feed a Family program. Click here to help.
Adopt a Family this Holiday Season
Over 800 children deserve to have their holiday wishes come true. We match each child with a kind-hearted 'elf' who purchases one or more of the items on their wish list.
Join in this great program, click here to get involved.
Planned Giving
Including Friends of Karen in your estate plans means you’ll be helping families in need well into the future. Your legacy will leave an impact. Click here to learn more.