Hyundai Hope On Wheels Announces Partnership In The “Hands on Hope” Contest Benefiting Children’s National And Georgetown Lombardi Research Programs In Fight To End Childhood Cancer

 Hyundai Hope On Wheels® (HHOW), a 501c3 nonprofit organization, partners with the Washington Auto Show and local area Washington, D.C. Hyundai auto dealers to announce the “Hands on Hope: 50 Hours for $50,000” competition. Taking place during the 2019 Washington Auto Show, teams from Georgetown Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center and Children’s National will compete to win a grand prize of $50,000 to aid in pediatric cancer research efforts for their representing institution. The last participant standing at the end of the 50 hours will have a chance to win an all-new 2019 Hyundai Kona SEL. The “Hands on Hope: 50 Hours for $50,000” contest begins Thursday, April 11th and the winner announced on Saturday, April 13th at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center.

The “Hands on Hope” competition is the pre-kickoff to the HHOW national 2019 awareness campaign titled, “Minutes are Precious.”  Every 36 minutes a child in the U.S. is diagnosed with pediatric cancer. In the fight against pediatric cancer, every minute counts; every second matters; every day we fight to get one step closer to finding a cure. That is why over the past 21 years, Hyundai Hope On Wheels has donated over $145 million to pediatric cancer research.

This year, HHOW renews its commitment to finding a cure and inspiring hope because minutes are precious in a child’s life.

“We are excited to join this year’s ‘Hands on Hope’ event in conjunction with the Washington area Hyundai Dealers and the DC International Autoshow to bring more awareness to pediatric cancer,” said Zafar Brooks, Executive Director for Hyundai Hope On Wheels.  “The program is a fun-filled event allowing teams from Children’s National and Georgetown Lombardi to compete in a unique way to receive additional funding for life-saving research. But the event also creates important awareness about the importance of the cause. Our mission is to give more minutes to children fighting pediatric cancer. Every child deserves to win!”

Three contestants from each institution will be challenged to keep continuous physical contact on the Hyundai vehicle over the course of 50 hours (or three days) with 15-minute breaks every three hours. If there are multiple contestants at the completion of 50 hours, each remaining person will select a Hyundai key from a bowl in hopes of selecting the winning key to start the vehicle. The contestant with the winning key will receive both the Hyundai Kona SEL for themselves and a $50,000 pediatric cancer research grant for their medical center. The remaining team will receive $25,000 in support of its work for pediatric cancer.

“Hyundai Hope On Wheels has a long history of supporting the fight against pediatric cancer and now the Hyundai Hands on Hope contest will contribute to that fight, benefiting two innovators in this field, Georgetown Lombardi and Children’s National,” said Kevin Reilly, owner of Alexandria Hyundai, and representative of the Washington Area Hyundai Dealers.  “These contestants at this year’s event are not only sacrificing their time to win a car, but also standing proudly to help save lives of children in the DMV area, who are fighting pediatric cancer. Each minute in the contest, are minutes that will give a family more time to spend precious moments with their child. The Washington Area Hyundai Dealers are proud to support this great work, and excited that one of their employees will drive away in a brand-new 2019 Hyundai Kona.”

Children’s National is a longstanding partner with Hyundai Hope On Wheels. With over $1.6 million in grant funding, Children’s National has led important research work benefiting kids with cancer.  “Hyundai Hope On Wheels has fueled some of the most promising cancer research projects underway at Children’s National,” said Jeffrey Dome, M.D., Ph.D., Vice President of the Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders at Children’s National. “We are grateful to Hyundai Hope On Wheels — and all of the dealerships here and around the country — for their partnership and generous support for research in pediatric oncology.”

Jeffery Toretsky, M.D., a pediatric oncologist and researcher at Georgetown Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center and previous recipient of grant funding from Hyundai Hope On Wheels says such awards allow him and his lab to be more imaginative. “If we, pediatric oncologists, don’t aggressively go after novel approaches to creating drugs that are most important for targeting childhood cancer, nobody will. Our work has led to a current clinical trial in Ewing’s sarcoma. Hyundai Hope On Wheels has provided resources for my team to search outside the box in order to achieve new ways to treat cancer in both children and young adults,” Toretsky said.

Supporters are invited to view the Hands on Hope contest during public show hours. Attendees will be joined by Hyundai Hope On Wheels National Youth Ambassadors and pediatric cancer survivors, Elizabeth Blair (13) and Carter Gates (14) to cheer on contestants.

After Hands on Hope, HHOW will embark on a road tour from Washington, D.C. to New York to officially launch activities on April 17th and 18th. The trip from DC to New York will consist of stops to children’s hospitals along the route (Nemours/Alfred I. DuPont Hospital for Children in Wilmington, DE;  Johns Hopkins Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center in Baltimore, MD; and Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia), who will each be awarded a $10,000 grant to support initiatives benefiting child cancer patients at their centers.  Once arriving in New York, the board of directors of HHOW, elected officials, and supporters will participate in a number of public activities to bring more awareness to pediatric cancer.

To learn more about our 2019 launch plans, please website or follow us on social media (Facebook, Twitter or Instagram) at facebook.com/HyundaiHopeOnWheels, twitter.com/HopeOnWheels or Instagram.com/HyundaiHopeOnWheels. You may also give a hand to hope with a tax-deductible donation at HyundaiHopeOnWheels.org/donate.

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