SANTA MONICA-MALIBU UNIFIED SCHOOL DISTRICT

PRESS RELEASE

 

CONTACT:  Sarah Wahrenbrock               FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

310.450.8338, ext. 229                                                30 JUL 2008

 

 

SMMUSD TEACHER RECEIVES 2008 LIVESTRONG AWARD FROM LANCE ARMSTRONG

 

Columbus, OH  July 29th  Santa Monica resident and teacher, Jeffrey Schwartz, was recently awarded the 2008 LIVESTRONG Award by the Lance Armstrong Foundation (LAF) for the extraordinary work he has done to create a cancer support network and promote cancer awareness and advocacy amongst local middle school students.  Schwartz, the second recipient of this award, was personally honored and acknowledged by Lance Armstrong at the 2nd LIVESTRONG Summit, which was held on July 24th-July 27th in Columbus, OH, and was attended by one thousand delegates from across from around the world.

 

One year after his own battle with testicular cancer in 2003, Mr. Schwartz moved to Santa Monica to teach 8th grade U.S. History at Lincoln Middle School in the Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District.  After attending the first LIVESTRONG Summit in Austin, TX, in 2006, Mr. Schwartz left empowered and inspired to impact his local community and to join the fight against cancer.

 

“Over 560,000 people die of cancer every year.  One in two men and one in three women will be diagnosed with cancer in their lifetime.  This disease affects all of us, whether we are a patient, a family member, a caregiver, or a friend.  As a survivor, I quickly realized that many students and faculty members were looking for support and a way to become involved in the cancer community,” said Schwartz. 

 

Two years ago, with the support of the LAF, it was at Lincoln Middle School that Schwartz developed Kids LIVESTRONG, a support group and discussion forum for students and faculty members affected by cancer.  Since then, Mr. Schwartz and his students have raised several hundred dollars for the LAF and helped to distribute informational materials and cancer related resources to approximately 3,000 people.  Accordingly, his group has made major strides towards helping to make cancer a local and a national priority by raising awareness about cancer, the importance of early detection, effective treatment options, and survivor care, in addition to the need for increased research and funding. The LAF hopes that Schwartz's middle school model can be spread to other school across the country.

 

According to Lance Armstrong, “We felt that the things that they had done, the programs that were enacted, and the passion that he took back to his community made him [Jeffrey Schwartz] worthy of the LIVESTRONG Award.”  

 

For more information on Jeffrey Schwartz and the Kids LIVESTRONG program, visit:

http://www.kidslivestrong.com

For more information on the Summit, visit:

http://livestrongblog.org/

For video footage of the Summit and the Awards Ceremony, please visit: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=boQpY9gIWn0

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BKurvRxFABc

 

About the Lance Armstrong Foundation

The Lance Armstrong Foundation (LAF) unites people through programs and experiences to empower cancer survivors to live life on their own terms and to raise awareness and funds for the fight against cancer. The LAF focuses on cancer prevention, access to screening and care, research and quality of life for cancer survivors. Founded in 1997 by cancer survivor and champion cyclist Lance Armstrong, the LAF has raised more than $250 million for the fight against cancer. Join 60 million LIVESTRONG wristband wearers and help make cancer a national priority. Unite and fight cancer at LIVESTRONG.org.

 

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SANTA MONICA-MALIBU UNIFIED SCHOOL DISTRICT

1651 16TH Street, Santa Monica, CA 90404

ph: 310.450.8338; fax: 310.581.1138

www.smmusd.org