About Us


To provide pediatric and adolescent cancer patients with a safe, educational and entertaining environment which reduces the stresses, side effects and emotional struggles confronted during cancer treatment.


Kids Fight Cancer was founded in 1985 by Jim Pesoli, a four-time cancer survivor.  After ending 9 months of enduring a grueling treatment procedure of chemotherapy and radiation treatment, in addition to undergoing a bone marrow transplant, Pesoli, aged 30 at the time, was motivated by his two sons to fight for survival and recovery.  Pesoli could not imagine how painful and trying the cancer treatment process would have been if it were one of his sons in his position.  As a parent, he was terrified that someday, his sons, who could not comprehend the illness nor the treatment process, might have to endure the same treatment he once faced.

Susan Pesoli, Jim's wife, hosted a surprise 30th birthday celebration for Pesoli in honor of his recovery. Over 250 friends and relatives joined him, and he was showered with an overwhelming amount of support and generosity.  Jim Pesoli decided to use the $5,000 he received from his supporters to make a difference for those in need.

In searching for a cause, the Pesoli's were visiting Children's Memorial Hospital in Chicago. The Oncology Activity Center was closed due to a lack of funding, and Pesoli wanted to provide the patients with a safe, educational and entertaining environment, which would assist the children in understanding their illness and coping with the treatment process.

From 1985-2009, Kids Fight Cancer was an Affiliated Organization of Children's Memorial, and thousands upon thousands of patients and families benefited from the facility and the programs and services implemented therein.  Currently, Kids Fight Cancer has expanded its fundraising initiatives to additional institutions throughout Chicago and the country.

Kids Fight Cancer upholds the motto of "Celebrating Life."  Our organization believes everyone should have an opportunity to attend exciting, high-energy fundraising events as making a difference should be fun, fulfilling and rewarding.  Join us in inspiring hope, and thank you for your faithful and continued support.