"Without Children’s Art Project I wouldn’t be where I am now. If you put your mind to it, you can accomplish anything."
All is calm, all is bright. This month, we have products inspired by artwork from Jake S. In the ninth grade, Jake was diagnosed with a malignant tumor. Unbeknownst to him, the tumor growing inside Jake for 15 years was caused by his unborn twin, which failed to develop and instead manifested as a tumor on his body. In 1997, Jake was admitted to MD Anderson Children's Cancer Hospital and underwent two years of chemotherapy treatments. During middle school, Jake endured severe bullying due to his struggles with dyslexia and attention deficit disorder (ADD). Nonetheless, he displayed remarkable resilience during his this time, he eventually dropped out of high school to become a skilled combo welder.
During his stay at MD Anderson, Jake grappled with depression. His involvement in the Children's Art Project (CAP) proved to be a source of solace. Recalling his experiences with CAP, Jake reflects, “Without Children’s Art Project I wouldn’t be where I am now. If you put your mind to it, you can accomplish anything” CAP played a crucial role in helping him maintain focus, especially with the challenges of his treatment. Without art as an outlet and the hope it provided, Jake felt defeated. To this day, Jake is a motivated artist, channeling his inspiration into creating beautiful paintings, often featuring mountains and beach scenery.
Jake ventured into entrepreneurship by establishing a landscaping company and subsequently honing his skills in various construction techniques, including the art of float tape texturing and drywall installation. Over time, he has expanded his expertise to include house construction and detailing, proficiency in working with carbon and stainless steel, and is on the cusp of launching a Limited Liability Company (LLC). His creative drive has been a constant throughout his life.
Jake's passion for writing, ignited in eighth grade, has led to a remarkable literary pursuit. Upon reconnecting with his birth mother, he discovered she writes books as well. Jake has channeled this literary passion into the creation of cartoon books based on his life experiences, with a second book near publication. His repertoire includes a "Caveman" and "Western" series, and each of these cartoon books forms a unique link to an overarching novel. Additionally, Jake has authored a biography, garnering recognition through media appearances and news coverage.
Jake enjoys community service and helping those in need. He successfully orchestrated a fundraising effort, raising $5,000 and collecting 600 canned food items for the Salvation Army. In addition to his local philanthropic endeavors, he sends care packages to people across the world. Jake also set a personal goal of growing out his hair. He’s already donated 16 inches of his hair to the charitable organization Wigs for Kids.
This year marks the 50th anniversary of Children's Art Project. Each month, we’ll provide updates, promote survivorship, and share uplifting stories about what makes Children’s Art Project special.