Each and every day extensive research is conducted to find a cure for cancer. But for those battling the disease and going through treatment, sometimes the best form of medicine they can receive is laughter. That's the approach two Nike designers took when they developed the first ever coloring and activity book for adult cancer patients.
The hope of Kim Kovel and Mark Smith is that "Hello My Name Is Cancer" will allow patients with the activity to laugh at the daily challenges of treatments while changing the attitude and tone for everyone affected by the diagnosis.
In January, Kovel, a senior material and color innovator, was diagnosed with an unusual type of lymphoma. After extensive chemotherapy and radiation, Kovel is in complete remission. During her treatment, Kovel refused to let cancer define her and instead she defined cancer through laughter. That inspired her to create the book with Smith, a designer who has worked on Air Jordans.
"I wrote this coloring and activity book, full of puzzles, coloring, mazes, word finds, dot to dots and other fun stuff," Kovel says, "because it turns out, the best way for my friends, family, doctors, nurses, and me, to beat cancer into a pulp, was to laugh."
Kovel used the book during her treatment as a way to distract her from the struggles that come with battling cancer. The puzzles, mazes, dot-to-dot activities and riddles helped her take the experience and flip it on its end, and made her laugh.
"Cancer isn't funny," Kovel says. "We know that. There's no right, or wrong, way to approach it, but what helps us cope is to laugh. And it's OK to laugh at cancer. Everyone hates cancer."
Kovel and Smith just finished Kickstarter campaign having raised more than triple their initial goal of $15,000. They will use the money toward printing and shipping the book to cancer patients across the country.