The Monmouth County Freeholder Board is declaring September "Go Gold Month" to raise awareness of pediatric cancer.

Monmouth County Freeholders joined by Sheriff Shaun Gould in proclaiming September as "Go Gold Month" (Monmouth County)

Every year almost 13,000 people under the age of 21 are diagnosed with cancer and seven children a day die from the disease.

"In September we pay tribute to the families, friends, professionals, and communities who lend their strength to children fighting pediatric cancer," says Freeholder Deputy Director Serena DiMaso. "We remember the young lives taken and dedicate our energies to combating pediatric cancer."

The Freeholder Board recently presented a proclamation for "Go Gold Month" to Terry Kelly, who lost her daughter to leukemia, and Robert Heugle of the Frances Foundation for Kids Fighting Cancer, a local non-profit charitable organization committed to bringing smiles to kids fighting cancer.

Gold has been the ribbon color for universal awareness of pediatric cancer since 1997. In the last 25 years, only two drugs have been specifically developed for children's cancer. DiMaso says it's shocking and saddening that only 3% of funds raised on behalf of the National Cancer Institute go directly to pediatric cancer research.

The Freeholder Board is urging everyone to get involved by wearing gold during the month of September, donating to a local or national charity, and urging lawmakers to continue funding pediatric cancer research.