The Loving Libbie Memorial Foundation began in 2006 in memory of a little girl named Libbie, who lost her lifelong battle with leukemia at the tender age of five. The Foundation’s flagship program – Comfort Through Food – provides nutritional and psychosocial relief to Texas children with cancer and other life threatening illnesses as they fight the greatest battle of their young lives.
After Libbie’s death, her mother, Becky Nichols, vowed to keep her daughter’s memory alive by helping other families whose children battled this deadly disease. Becky would never forget the many long weeks she spent in the hospital, trying to help Libbie as she struggled to eat during treatments. She created the Loving Libbie Memorial Foundation to fill a gap, as the only program in Central Texas that supplies pediatric cancer patients with comfort foods while they are undergoing cancer treatments.
In 2016, through a generous gift from the Fifth Age of Man Foundation, the Loving Libbie Memorial Foundation added Libbie’s Funtime Foodtruck to extend fun interactive food activities and events for these special kids and their families.
Demand for Comfort Through Food services continues to increase along with the growing Texas population—the number of children diagnosed with cancer at Dell Children’s has tripled since 1998. In 2018, over 1,700 Texas children and adolescents younger than 20 years were diagnosed with cancer. Approximately 200 children and adolescents die of cancer each year, making cancer the most common cause of disease-related mortality for Texans younger than 20.
Adequate nutrition can be the key defense in the fight against cancer by helping pediatric patients manage symptoms and aid healing and recovery. In addition, providing additional psychosocial support for the entire family is crucial during a child’s treatment for cancer.
In 2018, in an attempt to scale up on production and help fund the signature dish into new hospitals and clinics throughout Texas, Libbie’s Mom entered the foundation’s “Libbie’s Famous Mac and Cheese” in the HEB Quest for Texas Best contest. Placing as a Finalist and being taken under the wing of Night Hawk Frozen Foods, Libbie’s Famous Mac and Cheese can now be found for sale exclusively in HEB freezers across Texas.
The Loving Libbie Memorial Foundation exists to provide support for families in their fight against cancer. Like so many community members who have experienced the devastating effects of cancer, the Nichols family lost their precious daughter to a rare form of leukemia at five years of age. Through years of traveling out of town for medical care and spending weeks to months at a time in hospitals, they discovered a gap—a child’s need for comfort food that was not difficult to consume while undergoing treatment. No other program in Central Texas supplies young cancer patients with the comfort of specialty foods while they are undergoing medical treatments.