How to Help


Maybe you’ve got personal reasons to be passionate about pediatric cancer research. Maybe our story has moved you to care about our cause. However you came here, know that your energy and support have real meaning to the Caroline Symmes Endowment. When money or time is spent here, it’s spent where you will be able to see real impact on individual lives.

We aren’t going to tell you how exactly you need to help us, because we can’t. How you help is determined by who you are. However, we can share examples of very different ways people have become part of our cause.


Pink Label Event

Did you ever think we’d say you could help by shopping? Our Pink Label Event is a high-end consignment sale we host in Carmel, Indiana. All proceeds from the sale go to support the endowment. Usually we’ve relied on clothing donations from boutiques and friends to provide the merchandise—until the students of Carmel High School stepped in. Supported by art teacher Sarah Wolff, each year the students now collect clothes for a consignment sale called Runway for Riley, during which they host a fashion show and sell clothes at school, with proceeds going to our endowment.


Max Melrose

One stunning example of a fundraiser was planned by Max Melrose, one of Caroline’s best friends. After her passing, when Max was planning his Bar Mitzvah, he decided he wanted the event to benefit the endowment. On the invitation he asked that guests make contributions to the endowment and even bring their loose change to his party to be collected. On one of the most important nights of his life, Max raised $2500 for the Caroline Symmes Endowment in memory of his friend.


Colby and Cate’s Charities

Or maybe you just want to be present for those in need. The Lutz family decided early in the lives of their children, Colby and Cate, that giant birthday parties where kids got showered with expensive gifts they might never appreciate were not for them. Instead, they asked that friends and family donate the gifts they would have given Colby and Cate to Riley Hospital instead. In 2002, the group brought two SUVs full of toys to the hospital and decided to officially found Colby and Cate’s Charities. Ten years later, in 2012, they raised $65,000 in donations. Like the Caroline Symmes Endowment, a small group decided to make a difference and set out to do it.


Tailgating for a Cure

Sometimes, all you have to do to contribute is get together a group of friends. That’s what David and Stephanie Meier chose to do when they founded Tailgating for a Cure. Every year they invite anyone interested in attending into their home to watch the Notre Dame vs. Michigan game on their deck. Instead of bringing a side dish or a thank-you gift, guests are instead asked to donate to the Caroline Symmes Endowment. These donations are then matched by local foundations and companies. To date, Tailgate for a Cure has raised over $41,000 in Caroline’s honor.


Do you have a groundbreaking idea for a fundraiser? Perhaps you want to donate your time or services to one of our existing events. Maybe you want to make a donation of funds and watch them get to work. No matter how you want to get involved, we can’t wait to hear from you.