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Circle of Friends Programs

The Circle of Friends is a foundation for children with cancer and was created to increase self-esteem and self-confidence while promoting growth through self-discovery and expression. Bill Schroeder's Circle of Friends is a non for profit organization that helps these kids throughout all of Wisconsin. All of the proceeds stay in Wisconsin and help to invite more of these children on these trips. The Circle of Friends has several retired NFL players in their respected states developing programs that invite kids on these trips as well. Jerry Wunsch (Buccaneers and Seahawks), Austin King (Atlanta Falcons), Jared Tomich(Chiefs & Saints ), Mike Alstott (Tampa Bay Bucs), Brian Young (New Orleans Saints), Grant Wistrom (Seattle Seahawks) and singer/songwriter Galen Griffin (Nashville) are some of the players that we have had attend these events with kids from their respected states.

Our dream is that the Circle of Friends will grow year by year to include a professional athlete or celebrity and their group of kids from every major city nation wide.


  • Help pediatric cancer patients gain self-esteem and self-confidence.
  • Develop a sense of independence and interdependence while creating memorable lifelong friendships.
  • Encourage children to challenge themselves by introducing them to new experiences.
  • Provide parents a respite from caring for a sick child and allow them to spend time with other siblings.
  • Expand circle of Friends programs to include a player and children from every NFL city.
  • Heighten awareness, interest and support of our programs and mission nationwide.



  • "The Circle Of Friends made me feel like I was important and Bill was always there to help me try new things. Bill is my Best Friend." -Garrett Metz
  • "The Circle of Friends is such an important organization. Not only do our kids get to leave the cancer world behind, they learn to stand on their own and try new things, as well as building strong friendships, but the most important gift of all is a place to fit in and feel really good about who they are." -Rodney and Lisa Metz (Garrett's Parents)
  • “Amazing. Uplifting. Inspiring. The first words that come to mind when I hear the name Circle of Friends. The two trips I took were awesome, exciting and fun. It was a place where I felt like I fit in more. They spoiled us rotten. Walking away from the trips gave me an inspiration to have a better outlook on life. Circle of Friends rule!” -Ben Lansing
  • “Circle of Friends has played a big role in how our 11 year old son, Ben, has responded to an exhausting 10 years of fighting cancer and End Stage Renal Disease. Over the past two years, while awaiting a kidney transplant (as the result of six episodes of cancer), he had became withdrawn, unmotivated, and sad. He was so tired of being “the sick kid” and seemed to just give up his smile and many things happy. After the Winter Circle of Friends trip, Ben began awakening. In preparing for the trip, he became more actively involved in caring for himself, which gave him a sense of empowerment. Being surrounded by others with similar health issues put a face on the other sick (and healed) kids he’d heard about or seen in his many hospital visits, but had not really interacted with. It gave him a sense of community, of sorts, where he finally felt like he fit in and made sense. It afforded him the right to let his guard down and live life like other kids without illness live, by having fun doing absolutely and completely normal activities that he had been tentative to try again. And interaction with the volunteers and NFL players gave him inspiration to get back up and start living again. He went on the Reunion Florida trip recently, and again, had experiences that encouraged and reminded him that he was strong, capable and able to keep on contributing to the world, even if that meant simply through smiling and enjoying life again. We are incredibly grateful for what the Circle of Friends organization has done to be a part of bringing the Ben we knew, back to us again.” -Michelle Lansing(Ben's Mom)



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