About Us

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PJ’s for Patients is an organization with a simple goal: to make the experience of pediatric cancer a little less terrifying and a little more comfortable by providing new pajamas for children and young adults seeking treatments in hospitals away from home.

Over 13,000 children aged 19 and under are diagnosed with cancer each year in the United States. Fortunately, rates of effective treatments are continuing to improve, and cancer research is at an unprecedented level. However, a cancer diagnosis is multifaceted, complex, and unique; no two cases are exactly the same, just as no two patients are exactly the same. There is an emotional side to healing that must be fulfilled even when a patient receives the best possible medical care.

That’s why we want to swap out drab hospital gowns for cozy, warm, adorable, cool, cotton pajamas! We want our patients to remember how much they are loved, and to make their parents’ busy lives a tiny bit simpler by providing something small they may have forgotten to bring with them to treatment. We want our patients to feel at home- and what’s more emblematic of home than pajamas? 🙂

My name is Athena Sofides, and I began PJ’s for Patients in the summer of my sophomore year of high school after receiving a manilla envelope in the mail that changed my life. This manilla envelope, which I quickly opened over breakfast, informed me that the idea to start PJ’s for Patients, which emerged after a brainstorming conversation with my cousin Luke, was selected as a national first place winner of a 2013 Scholastic grant! After receiving the funding, PJ’s for Patients, as well as this very blog, were born.

Since our commencement, we’ve delivered over 2,700 pajamas to a variety of cancer hospitals and organizations in New York City, Boston & Springfield, Massachusetts, and San Juan, Puerto Rico! We’ve also collaborated with many schools, businesses, and organizations, both in and out of New York, in fundraisers, pajama collections, and pajama dress down days! In 2014, PJ’s for Patients became a member of CAC2, or the Coalition Against Childhood Cancer, a grassroots organization that aims to raise awareness of childhood cancer by combining forces to advocate, assist, and inform!

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If you are interested in hosting a fundraiser or pajama-related event in a school or workplace, or want to learn more about how you can help, please send an email to asofides@smith.edu. For further info and updates, pursue this blog at your leisure and like us on Facebook! Thanks for your interest!

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