Victor and Libby Boyce, parents of the late actor Cameron Boyce, share how their foundation has stayed active in promoting change during the pandemic.
Epilepsy and sudden unexpected death in epilepsy (SUDEP) awareness is needed now more than ever. How have you evolved in order to stay active throughout the pandemic? How have your programs and efforts changed?
The pandemic has seriously impacted our ability to meet with potential partners and members of our own team, but it has not diminished our passion or our determination to move forward. It goes without saying that Zoom has become invaluable for meetings and continued communications with our partners. We have been able to meet, vet, and embrace key players that are vital to our mission of curing epilepsy — especially SUDEP.
What have been the Cameron Boyce Foundation’s biggest highlights and milestones throughout 2020?
We are very excited and encouraged by the addition of two new board members, both of whom are at the highest level in their field. Our fundraising goals are on pace, and we are especially happy to know that much of the funds raised are small individual donations from young fans of Cameron.
We were able to get a lot accomplished in spite of the pandemic. We funded a youth photography program virtually, instead of in-person as originally designed. We also funded epilepsy research through the Cameron Boyce Take Flight Award in partnership with CURE Epilepsy. We have continued our work in developing partnerships with Gabby Gifford’s foundation to reduce gun violence, and we’ve also funded a project with Guitars Over Guns. We will continue to devise ways to be impactful during these difficult times and have several new projects in development.
What are your biggest goals for the foundation in 2021 and ahead? How has it been collaborating with your advisory board?
Our advisory board is the backbone of our organization, and we cannot express our gratitude enough to them. Our biggest goal for 2021 is to expand our reach nationally, working with researchers, doctors, and health institutions across the nation to better understand and serve the epilepsy community. We plan to push for greater awareness of epilepsy’s impact and to increase knowledge about managing epilepsy with the most recent treatments, as well as focus our funding on the cutting edge of epilepsy research.