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Our Beneficiaries

An estimated 40% of Americans will be diagnosed with cancer at some point in their lifetime. Meanwhile, National Cancer Institute* funding for investigative research and clinical trials has decreased 25% the past 10 years. SAA fills a void by providing vital seed funding to world-renowned hospitals that are investigating and conducting new clinical trials that lead to treatments and cures to defeat cancer. SAA-funded projects, including young researchers representing the next generation of cancer pioneers, are designed to bring about breakthroughs that lead to greater funding from the NCI, other foundations, and pharmaceutical and biotech companies.

Our benefit swims have generated more than $65 million in cancer research and clinical trial grants for Memorial Sloan-Kettering, Johns Hopkins, Moffitt Cancer Center, Chicago Rush, Children's Hospital of Atlanta, Mass General Hospital for Children, Dana Farber, Alliance for Cancer Gene Therapy, UC San Francisco Children's Hospital, UC Children's Hospital Oakland and Seattle Cancer Care Alliance.

With the support of more than 100 Olympians who are SAA ambassadors, we host benefit swims in Atlanta, Baltimore, Boston, Chicago, New York, San Francisco, Seattle, Tampa, Seattle, St. Louis and Tampa. Swim Across America was founded in 1987. It is a registered 501(c)3 non-profit. All donations are tax deductible.

*The National Cancer Institute is part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), which is one of eleven agencies that are part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.


Alliance for Cancer Gene Therapy - Stamford, CT

Alliance for Cancer Gene Therapy is leading the way for innovative research using cells and genes as "medicine." Research progresses successfully from the laboratory to clinical translation daily, moving closer to a less debilitating, more effective treatment approach essential to the quality of life and survival of cancer patients. Breakthroughs continue for lymphoma, leukemia, breast, prostate, lung, and brain cancers.

100% of the money we present to ACGT will go towards innovative research – research we all hope will make cancer a manageable disease. Follow this link to ACGT's video "Celebrating Progress", honoring their Research Fellows and Scientific Advisory Council.



Columbia Presbyterian Children's Hospital - New York, NY

Another deserving SAA beneficiary is The Tommy Palazzo Fellowship for Pediatric Oncology Research at Columbia Presbyterian Children’s Hospital. As one of the leading pediatric-oncology programs in the US today, it serves as a referral center for patients across the country and abroad. This hospital is one of only 20 nationwide institutions designated by The National Cancer Institute to conduct Phase 1 Pediatric Clinical Trials, which gift to pediatric patients/families the freedom to choose participation in potentially lifesaving therapies.



Dana-Farber Cancer Institute - Boston, MA

In 1996, the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute established The Swim Across America, Inc., Training Grants Fund for The Perini Quality-of-Life Clinic. The Perini Clinic was developed to address the obstacles that cancer survivors are likely to face post-treatment. Its mission is twofold: first, to help survivors tackle personal issues that treatment has caused them and their families; and, second, to support research aimed at improving treatment methodology and easing post-treatment affects.

Video: Lawrence Shulman, MD, talks about the impact SAA has had on The Perini Clinic.

Video: Lisa Diller, MD, shares a message on the monetary benefit provided by SAA to researchers at The Perini Clinic.


Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center - New York, NY

SAA is honored to finance The Swim Across America Laboratory at MSKCC. Combining research with clinical studies, "Our Lab" concentrates on how the immune system recognizes and accepts cancer and its mutations and, conversely, how the immune system rejects them. The lab's ultimate goal is the development of new avenues in cancer treatment, those which use stimulation of the immune system to attack cancer cells. Results from our laboratory are the bases of ongoing clinical trials at Sloane-Kettering. Swim Across America also supports the DeMatteo Laboratory at MSKCC.



Mercy Medical Center - Long Island, NY

The MIRACLE Pavilion at MMC is likewise endowed by SAA. This impressive, state-of-the-art Outpatient Radiation/Medical Oncology facility opened its doors in December 2005. In this relatively brief timespan, MIRACLE has significantly increased their onsite oncology-treatment capacity. Mercy Medical Center, home to The Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in Nassau County, accords Long Island residents local access to "... the best cancer care anywhere."


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Cancer Support Team - Westchester, NY

A home healthcare agency true to its name, CST offers both medical and personal support to lower Westchester residents living with cancer. CST’s services include pain and symptom control, care management, financial aid, transportation assistance and referrals to community resources. In addition, patients can be seen in their own homes ... with or without insurance coverage. CST delivers of a “human response to human needs."



The Children's Hospital at Montefiore - Bronx, NY

Osteosarcoma, the single most common type of bone cancers, is unusually common to children. Our chief beneficiary at this hospital is MSKCC fellow Alex Chou, MD, who passionately devotes his worklife to the cultivation and implementation of a targeted-therapy approach for osteosarcoma. The project is supervised by Richard Gorlick, MD, Chief of Hematology/Oncology at CHAM.





Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory - Cold Spring Harbor, NY

A new beneficiary, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory we will be funding a lung cancer research project to identify the molecular mechanism behind EGFR dependency in non-small cell lung cancer, utilizing state-of-the-art proteomic and genomic techniques. Understanding why cancer cells are dependent on specific oncogenes could lead to the development of more effective therapies.




Fighting Chance - Long Island, NY

Fighting Chance is a non profit counseling and resource center serving the East End of Long Island since 2001. FC provides a comprehensive range of services, free of charge, to the five towns of the East End. Professional counseling is available in one on- one sessions, in support groups and via email. Patient navigation of the health care system is provided by a dedicated staff member and a unique, 75 page guide to local cancer care resources. Coping with Cancer on the East End is updated annually.



UC San Francisco Children's Hospital - San Francisco, CA

One of the nation's leading children's hospitals, UCSF conducts advanced biomedical research simultaneous to providing complex patient care. The hospital creates a warm and homelike environment where children and their families find compassionate treatment ... all within arm's reach of scientific discovery. As medical technology contributes in large part to an increase of pediatric oncology survivors, UCSF physicians strive to ensure that this population receive appropriate clinical followup care, including educating them and their families about post-treatment risks.


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UCSF Children's Hospital Oakland Research Institute - Oakland, CA

Swim Across America welcomes a new beneficiary, the Children's Hospital Oakland Research Institute. CHORI is the internationally renowned biomedical research institute of Children's Hospital & Research Center Oakland. Bridging basic science and clinical research in the treatment and prevention of human disease, CHORI is a leader in translational research. A collaborative nexus for innovative research and learning that stretches beyond local boundaries, CHORI is at the forefront of basic and clinical research that strives to change the world - one patient at a time.

Learn more about SAA Felllow Dr. Saba and her work


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Seattle Cancer Care Alliance

Seattle Cancer Care Alliance’s vision is to lead the world in translating scientific discovery into the prevention, diagnosis, treatment and cure of cancer.  SCCA unites the doctors from Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, UW Medicine, and Seattle Children's to form a world-class treatment center that  provides advanced therapies and clinical studies for cancers and other blood disorders.


Johns Hopkins - The Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center (SKCCC)  
SAA is honored to finance The Swim Across America Laboratory at SKCCC. Since its inception in 1973, The SKCCC has become one of the most prestigious and advanced cancer centers in the world. Dedicated to understanding human cancer and finding more effective treatments, their scientists were the first to map a cancer genome, deciphering the genetic blueprints for colon, breast, pancreatic, and brain cancers.  Discoveries made at SKCCC have paved the way for personalized therapies and patients who visit the Kimmel Cancer Center have access to some of the most innovative and advanced therapies in the world.
Women & Infants
The Program in Women’s Oncology at Women & Infants Hospital of Rhode Island, the largest and most diverse oncology service for women in the Northeast, was launched in 1989 to provide a broad spectrum of care for gynecological and breast cancers. It has evolved into a world-renowned, multi-disciplinary facility where clinicians uncover key answers to the questions of cancer, and focus on the needs of the patients and families.


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Baylor Charles A. Sammons Cancer Center

The new 10-story Baylor Charles A. Sammons Cancer Center at Dallas is a 467,000 sq. ft. facility, the largest outpatient cancer center in North Texas. Baylor Sammons Cancer Center offers more than 100 clinical trials, 800 patients participated in trials in 2009. Also, more than 15 disease-specific support and educational groups and programs are available at Baylor Sammons Cancer Center, making it one of the most comprehensive programs in the country.

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Moffitt Cancer Center

Swim Across America is proud to be associated with this new beneficiary. The institute has made a lasting commitment to the prevention and cure of cancer, working tirelessly in the areas of patient care, research and education to advance one step further in fighting this disease.


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Rush University Medical Center

At the new, state-of-the-art Rush University Cancer Center -- one of the largest providers of cancer care for patients in Chicago and the surrounding tri-state area — medical oncologists, surgeons and radiation oncologists collaborate with other specialists and highly trained nurses to provide leading-edge, compassionate care for a wide array of cancers.



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Aflac Cancer & Blood Disorders Center at Children's Healthcare of Atlanta
Recognized as one of the leading pediatric cancer, hematology and BMT programs in the country, the Aflac Cancer Center is committed to providing children and young adults with a brighter future through advanced medical treatment, family-centered care, a child-friendly environment and innovative research.
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MassGeneral Hospital for Children Cancer Center
The MassGeneral Hospital for Children Cancer Center provides personalized multidisciplinary, state-of-the-art care to children of all ages with malignancies and disorders of the blood. Our family centered programs include inpatient and outpatient care and consultative services in a coordinated, team-based approach. In addition, MGHfC has the only proton beam facility in the region, a unique technology for the treatment of children with tumors of the brain and eye.