U.S. Pain program, Points for Pain, honored by New York Yankees
MIDDLETOWN, CONN. (May 26, 2017)—Most teenage boys want to spend their free time watching TV and playing video games. But not 14-year-old Tyler Cashman. Since 2015, Tyler has worked tirelessly to raise $35,000 for children living with painful, chronic conditions through a unique fundraising and awareness program, Points for Pain. Tyler started the program in collaboration with the U.S. Pain Foundation, the leading nonprofit for both adults and children with chronic pain.
“Since I can’t take away their pain, I wanted to do the next best thing,” said Tyler. “And that is to raise awareness and make children feel included and understood.”
[su_pullquote align=”right”]“Since I can’t take away their pain, I wanted to do the next best thing,” said Tyler. “And that is to raise awareness and make children feel included and understood.”[/su_pullquote]
Several times a year, Tyler asks fans at sports games at local schools and colleges to pledge donations based on the number of points their team scores. He speaks to the crowd about chronic pain before the event and then answers questions and passes out materials. All proceeds benefit U.S. Pain’s Pediatric Pain Warriors Program, which offers scholarships for a week-long summer camp for kids with pain and their families in Kentucky; a magazine and gala highlighting the stories of these brave children, called the INvisible Project; and educational events.In honor of his efforts, Tyler and Points for Pain are being recognized today during the New York Yankees’ annual HOPE Week, which highlights the contributions of five nonprofits each year. Tyler was surprised by several players this morning — Greg Bird, Chris Carter, Aaron Hicks, Matt Holliday, Bryan Mitchell, Austin Romine and Chasen Shreve — and spent the day at Central Park with them, taking out a rowboat, playing with remote control sailboats and then having a picnic. At the 7:05 pm game against Oakland later tonight, Tyler will throw out the first pitch and be presented with a $10,000 check for Points for Pain.
[su_pullquote align=”right”]Get involved!
- Post on social media congratulating Tyler and Points for Pain
- Learn more by visiting the Points for Pain webpage
Tyler started the program in honor of his mom, Casey, a single parent who lives with several chronic conditions, including a painful neurological disorder, a connective tissue disease and cardiovascular problems. Her health challenges are so significant that, some days, she can’t make it up the stairs of their two-story house.
Tyler witnessed her constant struggle over the years. But he also saw how, despite the obstacles, she gave hope to others by volunteering with U.S. Pain Foundation, which offers a variety of programs that connect and empower pain warriors. As they became more and more involved with the organization, Tyler and Casey met hundreds of adults and kids living with pain. While it broke his heart to see what his mom was going through, he couldn’t imagine what it was like to be young and physically suffering. Tyler decided he wanted to do something to help.
“We’ve faced a lot of trials and tribulations as a family since my pain began in 2008,” said Casey. “I’ve tried to make the best of a difficult situation, and I’m glad that my son took that lesson to heart.”
Tyler, who at the time was manager of his middle school’s girls’ basketball team, realized he could turn the excitement of a sporting event into a fundraising and awareness campaign. After talking with Paul Gileno, U.S. Pain Foundation’s founder and president, school administrators, and his mom, Points for Pain was born.
“We are incredibly proud of Tyler,” said Gileno. “Trying to improve the lives of people with pain can feel like an uphill battle. There is a lot of stigma and misunderstanding—and a serious lack of treatment options and support resources—when it comes to both adults and children. Tyler is a reminder that anyone can make a difference if they put their mind to it.”
To learn more about about Points for Pain and the children it helps, or to donate, click here.
***Photos of event available upon request***
About U.S. Pain Foundation
The mission of U.S. Pain Foundation is to educate, connect, inform and empower those living with pain while also advocating on behalf of the entire pain community. As a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to serving those who live with pain conditions and their care providers, U.S. Pain Foundation helps individuals find resources and inspiration. For more information, visit www.uspainfoundation.org.