Teen Honored For Starting Award-Winning Chronic Pain Charity
Photo Credit: NJ.com
Most teenagers are concerned about schoolwork or spending time with their friends, but an eighth-grader from New Jersey has been busy raising thousands of dollars for children with chronic pain.
Fourteen-year-old Tyler Cashman, a native of Tewksbury Township, has started his own charity for kids with chronic illness called Points For Pain. Using his experience managing his school’s girls’ basketball team, Cashman has used local girls’ high school and junior high school basketball games as springboards to raise money for the charity.
Through his first Points for Pain fundraiser last December and additional work on his own, more than $10,000 has been raised. Cashman donated the money to the U.S. Pain Foundation’s Pediatric Pain Warriors Program, allowing children living with chronic pain to attend a two-week summer camp, the Center for Courageous Kids, in Kentucky.
“I felt good about it,” said Cashman to the Hunterdon Review. “I knew I was doing something good and wanted to make a difference in their lives. I know they struggle day to day.”
Cashman’s inspiration comes from his mother, Casey, who was diagnosed with Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy Syndrome in 2008. Despite the intense physical pain she often endures, Casey has used her illness as a motivation to help others and has volunteered for the U.S. Pain Foundation for the past three years.
“I’ve seen my mom make a difference for other people and I just wanted to do the same for children; make them feel accepted and understood,” said Tyler.
His work hasn’t gone unnoticed. Earlier this year, Tyler was presented with the Presidential Gold Service Award by Barack Obama, and also won the Fundraiser of the Year award from nonprofit PRO. He’s also still actively continuing to fundraise and has two more Points for Pain benefits scheduled at local basketball games over the next two months.
Click here to learn more about Cashman’s cause and make a donation.