The Dear Jack Foundation provides impactful programming that directly benefits adolescents and young adults diagnosed with cancer in order to improve quality of life and create positive health outcomes from treatment to survivorship for patients and their families.
In the spring of 2005, Andrew McMahon and his band Jack's Mannequin embarked on their first U.S. headlining tour. Before completing the tour, Andrew paid a visit to his voice doctor in New York City due to a growing number of health concerns. The results from the blood work that came back the following morning were alarming and Andrew was quickly admitted to New York Presbyterian Hospital. Ultimately, everyone's worst fears were confirmed: Andrew had Acute Lymphocytic Leukemia (ALL).
Throughout the summer of 2005, Andrew underwent two rounds of chemotherapy, radiation treatment, and a lifesaving stem cell transplant from his sister. During his battle with ALL, it became clear to Andrew that in a generation where cancer has become the second largest cause of death in the U.S. and the biggest public action item relevant to health, there were still major shortfalls in treatment, support, and research on behalf of the young adult demographic.
In an effort to initiate change and provide a voice for the generations of young adults who have been diagnosed with cancer, Andrew founded the Dear Jack Foundation in July of 2006.
"Because of Dear Jack's Breathe Now wellness retreat program for couples, my partner and I were given the gift of time. Time to check out the chaos of life and truly connect through yoga, hiking, breakout sessions and community. There is not a value you can put on time, especially when it's used to improve our life and relationship. We are grateful for the experience." - Anonymous, Breathe Now Participant
"We anticipated the Universal experience for so long - to be together as a family. My kids were impressed that I could (somewhat) keep up! My son tried some "Harry Potter" spells to make the cancer go away (let's hope they work!).We were able to relax and not have to worry about the hard stuff for a bit. Thank you Dear Jack for making it all possible. - Jennifer (LifeList program participant)
"Receiving multiple cancer diagnoses isn't fun for anyone. When introduced to the DJF family, it provided a welcome and much needed light in a very dark time. Thank you for what you do, what your volunteers, do and everything that you aim for." - Chris (LifeList participant)
"Dear Jack opens up a door to people I didn't even know existed
that have similar struggles and experiences to me with equally similar
feelings about them." - Laura (LifeList Participant)