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Why did the Polaris Dawn crew land in the Philippines this week? 5 answers.

Memphis, Tennessee, April 21, 2023

Polaris Dawn crew delivers satellites to Southern Philippines Medical Center, House of Hope for Kids with Cancer, Inc on April 18, 2023.

They were…

1. …delivering Starlinks to children’s cancer facilities.
“If we’re going to get to the Moon or Mars someday, we better have conquered childhood cancer along the way.” – Jared Isaacman, Mission Commander of Polaris Dawn

Along with the Philippines, Chile, Peru, Brazil and Mozambique will also receive Starlinks in effort to improve access to global healthcare.

2. …advancing a global mission to raise survival rates for kids with cancer.
In many developing countries, only 1 out of 5 children diagnosed with cancer will live. The donated satellite units will help address this problem by facilitating telehealth consultations between institutions that enable doctors to share treatment recommendations, review diagnostic images, and conduct patient education.

3. …deepening a partnership with St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.
The Polaris Program – a mission to rapidly advance human space flight ability while helping those on Earth- has selected St. Jude as its philanthropic partner to help improve global survival rates for childhood cancer.

“When we began the Global mission to raise survival rates in low- and middle-income countries, internet connectivity arose as an issue many still face as an obstacle to medical communication and education in the treatment of children with cancer in these countries. Through the generosity of the Polaris Program, and the gift of Starlinks, this obstacle will no longer remain for those on this call. With collaboration, connectivity, and compassion – Together we will change the world.” - Suheir Rasul VP, Global Alliances of ALSAC, the fundraising and awareness organization for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.

4. …holding a massive international virtual call across 6 time zones.
“We are fortunate to work with two organizations who are here to change the world: SpaceX's Starlink and St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Today, their visions intersect and it is an honor to be part of this call which is a great display of technology and innovation.” - Isaacman

“Being given the gift of Starlinks is like receiving superpowers. It gives us the power to be able to communicate and for others to reach us. The Polaris Dawn crew gave us such a gift.” - Dr. Mae Dolendo, Director Pediatric Oncology, Southern Philippines Medical Center (SPMC), and Founder House of Hope for Kids with Cancer, Inc. — Philippines

“I am honored to be able to meet these fantastic people. During the pandemic we reinvented our programs, so in our rehabilitation center we trained some of the parents of our children, so they could be guided online. We are ambitious and we want to continue our unique online rehabilitation program in even the most remote areas. Starlink will allow us to do that. We are grateful and thankful for this big gift from the Polaris Dawn crew that will enable us to serve every kid with cancer." - Alejandra Méndez, Board Member, Fundación Nuestros Hijos (FNH) — Chile

“The Starlink donation made by the Polaris Dawn crew is inspiring and gives children in Peru the connectivity needed to access telemedicine from the Andes of Peru. Most of the services are in Lima, thanks to this support, our work will be globalized and we will be able to achieve the communication we needed with local hospitals and international partners. This gift will save thousands of lives.” - Jesús Dongo Ávalo, Founder and President, Vidawasi Foundation and Clinic — Peru

“Our internet isn’t good, and this technology will improve the way we are able to offer care to children in our country.” - Dr. Faizana Amodo, Director Pediatric Oncology, Hospital Central de Maputo — Mozambique

“This technology will help with the techniques we are developing and the project we have with St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital to provide care to children throughout Brazil. With the Starlink project we will be able to reach even the far sides of Brazil.” - Henrique Duarte Prata, President, Fundação PIO XII, Hospital de Amor — Brazil

5. …shining a light on the struggles faced by cancer patients and showing the impact
every person can make.
Donate here to St. Jude and be part of a mission to help children everywhere with cancer and other catastrophic diseases.



Photo credit: ALSAC/St. Jude Children's Research Hospital


Ree Nicholas

About St. Jude Children's Research Hospital

St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital is leading the way the world understands, treats and defeats childhood cancer and other life-threatening diseases. Its purpose is clear: Finding cures. Saving children.® It is the only National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center devoted solely to children. When St. Jude opened in 1962, childhood cancer was considered largely incurable. Since then, St. Jude has helped push the overall survival rate from 20% to more than 80%, and it won't stop until no child dies from cancer. St. Jude shares the breakthroughs it makes to help doctors and researchers at local hospitals and cancer centers around the world improve the quality of treatment and care for even more children. Because of generous donors, families never receive a bill from St. Jude for treatment, travel, housing or food, so they can focus on helping their child live. Visit St. Jude Inspire to discover powerful St. Jude stories of hope, strength, love and kindness. Support the St. Jude mission by donating at, liking St. Jude on Facebook, following St. Jude on XInstagramLinkedIn and TikTok, and subscribing to its YouTube channel.