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About Michael's Fund

Michael’s Fund is a non-profit 501(c)(3) volunteer organization started for Michael David Wrobel who lost his life to Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma at age 11 on June 10, 1996. Michael’s Fund is dedicated to helping children and adults survive cancer through marrow transplants. Your tax-deductible contributions are applied directly towards funding marrow donor recruitment drives and improving donor typing. Increasing the number of individuals tested and added to the National Marrow Donor Program and improving the quality of their typing increases the number of potential marrow matches and lives saved from cancer and other serious blood diseases.

“Mom, do I have a match?” These were the words of Michael Wrobel as he was fighting his personal battle against Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. But on June 10, 1996, Michael lost his hope for survival at age 11. It was a sad day for all who knew and loved Michael. Yet his special characteristics and unique personality live on through “Michael’s Fund.”
“Michael’s Fund” was started by Michael’s family and friends shortly before he passed away. At that time, his only hope for survival was a bone marrow transplant. However, the odds of finding an exact match for Michael were astronomical. A match, though, was not found in time to save Michael’s life.
But a match can save someone else’s life. That’s why “Michael’s Fund” continues today. It serves as a memorial to our beloved Michael in the hope that other families will not have to suffer the emotional and financial burden of finding a match.
For Michael, it was a constant battle from the day he was diagnosed. Although he can no longer fight for himself, we can help others fight cancer through Michael’s Fund.
And that’s exactly what we’re doing.
From the creation of Michael’s Fund in 1996 to the present day, Michael’s Fund has:
•Raised over $856,500
• Financially supported 1,700 marrow drives
• Improved marrow typing of 6,191 donors
• Recruited over 51,500 individuals into the “Be The Match” National Marrow Donor Program
• Helped 280 children and adults receive marrow transplants

Michael's Story

A video below explaining how it began

When 11-year-old Michael David Wrobel lost his battle to non-Hodgkin lymphoma 19 years ago,

the odds of finding an exact match were astronomically high and, despite all the efforts of his

family and friends, an exact bone marrow match was not located in time to save young Michael.

These efforts became the basis for the creation of Michael’s Fund to help other children and

adults find bone marrow matches in time to save their lives.


Michael’s Fund is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization functioning solely through the efforts of family,

friends and dedicated volunteers. All monies raised are applied directly toward the funding of

marrow donor recruitment drives and improved donor typing. Since 1996, Michael’s Fund has sponsored

over 1,700 drives throughout all 6 New England states, New York and Missouri.


Michael’s Fund, created by Michael’s parents, Tom and Cindy Wrobel, along with family and

friends, serves as a beacon of hope for many children and adults stricken with cancer and other

serious blood diseases. Increasing the number of drives, increases the number of individuals

tested, which translates into more marrow matches and potential cures for victims of cancer and

other serious blood diseases.


“Michael’s Fund’s main focus is to help children and adults defeat cancer by raising public

awareness and funding to increase the number of potential, life-saving marrow donors,” said

Michael’s Fund Committee Member, Marylou Kocon Cordeiro.


To date, Michael’s Fund has raised more than $856,500, sponsored more than 1,700 marrow

drives, improved marrow typing of 6,191 donors and recruited over 51,500 donors. 

In addition to tax-deductible donations from private citizens other funding sources include; 

an Annual Michael’s Fund Golf Tournament, contributions from businesses, community 

organizations, raffles, auctions, walk-a-thons, marathons, brunches and dinner dances.


Although more than 525 patients receive marrow transplants each month, the number of patients

who could benefit from this life-saving therapy is much greater. Michael’s Fund, along with

the Be The Match Registry (which facilitates unrelated marrow transplants for patients with life-

threatening diseases), is working to close this gap.


Michael’s Fund was presented with the National Marrow Donor Program’s (NMDP) prestigious

Allison Atlas Award in 2002. At the 2007 Council Awards Program, of the NMDP, Michael’s Fund

was honored, once again with a second award, the Volunteer Innovation Award for its proven

longevity as a volunteer group demonstrating commitment and support of the NMDP’s mission.


Michael’s Fund has also played a vital role in contributing to the passing of state legislation in RI (1998),

MA (2000), NH (2006), CT (2011) and ME (2014) to ensure that health insurers provide coverage for marrow

donor testing. Currently, only a handful of states have this legislation in place. Michael’s Fund is presently

championing the cause for new legislation in VT to help this state achieve this goal.