HISTORY OF OUR FOUNDATION: When friends Rob Belanger and Chris Federico each lost a parent to cancer (Mark Belanger, Baltimore Orioles shortstop, and Susannah Federico, both pictured below), they honored them by formulating the Belanger-Federico Foundation in 2004 to raise money through a golf tournament. After two successful celebrity golf tournaments, Rob and Chris wanted to shift the focus of the Foundation away from research and onto something more tangible. Little did they know how good their timing was.
In 2006, Cool Kids’ Executive Director Sharon Perfetti had just finished serving as the general coordinator of Annie’s Playground in Fallston, Maryland; she was seeking an opportunity to involve herself with a nonprofit organization that served children. Simultaneously, world champion figure skater Kimmie Meissner had lost two friends to cancer and was searching for a children’s charity to support.
Through mutual friends, Rob and Chris met Sharon and Kimmie and together they conceived Cool Kids Campaign to focus on serving children and their families battling cancer. Some wondered where the idea of assisting kids with cancer would lead us and how we would stand apart from similar organizations. Looking back has allowed us to know one thing for sure – Cool Kids Campaign has significantly and directly impacted hundreds of children and their families across the country as they utilize our 100% free programs.