Childhood cancers represent 1% of all new cancer diagnoses. In 2018, around 15,590 kids and teens between the ages of 0-19 were determined to have cancer. Albeit uncommon, cancer is the leading cause of death by illness in children.
However, one child, Giulianna Demma, 11, has stepped up to help battle the brute disease in her own way, and is very optimistic for the future, with big ambitions, and she’s worked to make life a little easier for kids battling cancer.
Demma from Freehold, New Jersey, sews colorful hospital gowns for kids, replacing the dull ones they would normally be given.
In under a year since she began her task, Giuliana has made and donated over 150 hospital gowns for sick youngsters not only in New Jersey, but also New York to California and from Mississippi to Canada. The Freehold young lady’s gowns feature vibrant colors and are available in many different designs such as butterflies, Mickey Mouse, flowers, Super Mario, Pokemon characters, Cat in the Hat, and many more!
Demma who attends Barkalow Middle School and is a sixth grader said the point is to offer a lively option in contrast to the frequently dreary, bland gowns children are given as they go through treatment in settings that can be terrifying and impersonal.
“It makes me happy to help a child through their dark times,” said Giuliana, who is poised well beyond her years. “I hope that they feel that they’re brave. I want them to know that they’re brave, loved and that they’re an inspiration.”
A portion of the gowns go to the hospitals, for example, Hackensack University Medical Center and those in the RWJBarnabas Health system, which just placed an order for a batch. Others go to nonprofits that serve pediatric cancer patients.
Giuliana Deema named her project G’s Giving Gowns and even created a website and social media accounts to unify her efforts and work with correspondence with associations and people intrigued by her outfits. Her social media presence additionally assists Deema with connecting with the individuals who want to donate fabrics to help her.
“I love to create a special handmade gown with bright vibrant colors and patterns to bring a smile to the faces of these brave little warriors,” she says on her website.
The thought of G’s Giving Gowns flourished the previous summer when Giuliana, who figured out how to sew at a fashion camp in 2020, was looking for a sewing project. Her mom, Vanessa Demma, reminded her of the delight that a uniquely designed, disney-themed hospital gown had brought her cousin, Giada, who was determined to have medulloblastoma – a rare childhood cancer – around 5 years back when the child was only 10 months old.
Giuliana immediately adored the thought.
“My niece woke up one day, and her head was wobbling and she was vomiting. Her parents knew something was wrong,” Demma recalled. “They found a brain tumor, which must have been growing since birth, and it started pressing on a part of her brain. She had a 10-hour emergency brain surgery. They said it saved her life.”
Sometime in the not-so-distant future, Giuliana would like to have an adequate number of volunteers to give even more gowns to hospitalized children. She desires to ship out another 200 outfits and reach out to additional establishments, she said.
What an amazing child with much in store for her future! When asked if a fashion design is a possible future career, she replied : “I want to be a scientist, maybe research cancer treatments.”