We had the good fortune of connecting with Amy Lejeune and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Amy, what is the most important factor behind your success?
The primary focus of B.I.G. Love Cancer Care is to ease the childhood cancer journey. Our core mission is to meet the most vital and urgent physical, emotional, and financial needs of our pediatric oncology and hematology patients and their families through our 20 programs at six Texas-based hospitals, including all 3 Texas Children’s Hospital campuses and MD Anderson Children’s Cancer Hospital here in the Houston area. Success for us is measured in the smiles of patients receiving items from their wish lists. It is in tears of gratitude shed by parents receiving groceries when money is tight. It is in the legacies of our namesake, Brooke, of my daughter, Paige, and many other precious children who left this earth much too soon but whose lights continue to shine through the work of B.I.G. Love.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
When our family was catapulted into the world of childhood cancer, our family made it our personal mission to do whatever we could to help others on this road. We were fortunate to have a strong support system, but along the way we met many who were not as fortunate. We began a charity bowling event the first year Paige was in treatment. She was involved in all parts of the process, from naming it (Striking for Gold) to designing logos and signage. In February 2020, we held our 4th event, with proceeds going to B.I.G. Love. We raised $20,000 that day–all in the name of helping families just like us. After Paige passed away in 2016, I worked in Pastoral Care at our church before venturing back into the classroom last August. I had 17 years in education at the time of her diagnosis and felt a stirring to return. That return ended up being short-lived. When Jessica (our Executive Director and co-founder) approached me about joining B.I.G. Love on a full-time basis, I knew this was where I needed to be. The road of childhood cancer is a hard one, and it can feel very lonely at times. I have been there, and I want to do whatever I can to help lighten the load for families in the fights of their lives. This is not a task I take lightly, and I am honored and privileged to serve however I can.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
My work at B.I.G. Love Cancer Care is a direct result of my own daughter’s battle with childhood cancer. This October will mark 4 years since she stepped into Heaven. Paige was a perfectly healthy child—until one day she wasn’t. Initially diagnosed in January 2014, Paige battled a very aggressive form of leukemia not once, not twice, but 3 times in less than 3 years. She faced every challenge with strength, courage, and determination. Paige didn’t change on the inside–no matter what the cancer beast threw at her, she refused to let it define her. She had plans to be a pediatric oncology nurse, as she was quite attached to the other kiddos she met through the course of her journey. She knew the cancer road all too well and hoped to serve and encourage kids going through similar battles. Paige’s smile—that beautiful smile—brightened even the darkest of days. Our girl was known for her sense of humor, sarcasm, and sass. Her positive attitude in the face of tremendous adversity was nothing less than awe-inspiring. Most of all, Paige was VERY strong in her faith. Faith in God’s plan for her life. Faith in His timing. Faith in His promises. She lived out (in every way) our family verse of Romans 12:12…Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. I strive every day to continue Paige’s amazing legacy by shining her light as we work to help other families on this road. By sharing the story of her courageous fight and her incredible faith. By trusting God to guide our steps as we keep our faith in Him. It’s what our girl would have wanted—I just know it.
Paige photos – Amy Jones, Forever Photography