Paper can be used to spread messages of joy, gratitude and even sympathy using holiday cards, thank you cards and sympathy cards. Linda Binder, 49, found another powerful use for paper: giving hope to cancer patients.
Linda Binder: Cancer survivor
Binder knows what it’s like to live with this disease – in 1984, she was diagnosed with CML leukemia. She underwent a bone marrow transplant, which was her only shot at life, that same year. Even with a 50-50 chance of survival, she pulled through and the bone marrow transplant miraculously worked. This November, she plans on returning to the hospital on the 30th anniversary of the surgery. But she’s not coming back empty handed.
Offering support with paper cranes
Binder has folded 1,000 paper cranes and will bring them to bone marrow recipients at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle, Washington. She was inspired by the story “Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes” If you’ve never heard it, the story is all about the true story of a young Japanese girl who had been diagnosed with leukemia after being exposed to radiation from an atomic bomb. That’s when she heard about the Japanese tale of the paper cranes. Legend has it that if you fold 1,000 paper cranes, you will be granted a wish. Of course, for the girl, her wish was to return to good health.
Cancer survivor Binder folded these cranes for the exact same reason. She hopes that her efforts will bring good fortune to those going through what she experienced. Binder is adding another good deed to this Fight of One Thousand Cranes project: She’s selling her cranes at $2 a piece with the goal of raising $2,000 to donate to the hospital. Even if she doesn’t reach her financial goal, she will no doubt help support these cancer patients.
“Seattle gave me my life back,” Binder told the Coloradoan. “Cancer is not a death sentence. You get to a point where you have cancer, but cancer doesn’t have you.”
Binder isn’t the only one using paper cranes to bring good health to those who are sick. New Jersey teen Sarah Stover was diagnosed with follicular lymphoma in August 2012. To help with her recovery, the Morris County Arts Workshop started a program to collect 1,000 paper cranes to deliver to Stover in hopes of inspiring a full recovery.
“The response by the community has been amazing,” Stover’s mother told the New Jersey Hills Observer. “The loving support lets you know you’re not alone.”
See how you can use paper to support your loved ones, whether it’s sending a quick thank you note or writing a sympathy card to mail to someone in need of emotional support. It’s amazing what a simple piece of paper can do.