For Those Living with Metastatic Breast Cancer (by Judy)

November 2, 2011

Researchers are surveying people living with metastatic breast cancer about how they make treatment decisions. If this applies to you, please consider taking the survey. Their deadline for the survey is November 11. Thanks so much.

SURVEY
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Cross-posted to Just Enjoy Him.


Featured Charity: Making Memories Breast Cancer Foundation (by Judy)

October 27, 2011

Making Memories Breast Cancer Foundation is exactly that: an organization that makes memories, wishes for those who have metastatic breast cancer, and, depending on the wish, their families.

Their mission is:

To provide an opportunity for metastatic breast cancer patients’ dream or wish to be fulfilled by providing a special time of ‘Making Memories’ together with their families, a chance that might not have become a reality without the assistance of the Making Memories Breast Cancer Foundation.

To advance the awareness of breast cancer and to educate the public about the vast resources and support available to breast cancer patients and their families.

Recognizing the huge financial strain placed on families wherein a member has metastatic breast cancer, Making Memories provides a way for metastatic breast cancer patients to make wishes come true, whether they’re in the form of a trip with their famly, a way to bring family to their bedside, or grants for publishing memoirs or other endeavors.

Making Memories hosts events and promotions as fundraisers. In addition, their website is a source of information about subjects including breast cancer facts and FAQs. Naking Memories currently has a list of wishes from people who have applied to Making Memories.

I think organizations like Making Memories are vitally important to metastatic breast cancer patients who find their finances depleted from cancer treatment and wish to make memories for themselves and their families. I plan to financially support Making Memories somemtime during the coming year. I hope you’ll join me in doing so as well.

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Cross-posted to .Just Enjoy Him


Featured Charity: Metastatic Breast Cancer Network (by Judy)

October 13, 2011

On Metastatic Breast Cancer Awareness Day, I’d like to feature the Metastatic Breast Cancer Network, or MBCN.

MBCN was founded in 2004 by Jane Soyer and Nina Schulman. When diagnosed with advanced breast cancer, they experienced feelings of isolation from the very groups established to provide support. They felt the stigma of being a ‘failure’ in the breast cancer community. Their belief that cancer cannot be viewed as a disease from which one is either a ‘survivor’ or to which one has succumbed, fueled their desire to advocate for change.

As someone with metastatic breast cancer, I applaud Soyer’s and Schulman’s organization. It is self-described as:

a national, independent, patient-led, non-profit, advocacy group dedicated to the unique concerns of the women and men living with metastatic breast cancer.

For one thing, I’m glad tney recognize that men can also get breast cancer. For another, an organization like this makes me feel less lonely and isolated in the cheerful pinkness of National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. That’s because the board and members themselves are people with metastatic breast cancer. Their mission statement revolves around both awareness and education. Their website includes sections on Education, Developing Awareness, Support-Resources, Special Events, and News. MBCN even has an annual conference with this year’s conference being held on October 29 in Baltimore, MD.

Kudos to MBCN for filling a gap in breast cancer awareness and education. I applaud those who founded and/or are involved in MBCN.
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Cross-posted to Just Enjoy Him.


Featured Charity: The IBC Network Foundation (by Judy)

October 10, 2011

It’s vitally important not just to feature breast cancer charities, but for me, particularly, to feature charities that focus on Inflammatory Breast Cancer (which I have) which is a rare and deadly breast cancer.

As I’ve said before, IBC typically presents differently than “regular” breast cancer does. A woman with IBC may not have a lump at all, and it’s often misdiagnosed as a breast infection such as mastitis. Women who have features of IBC that don’t go away need to be vigilant in asking their doctors for tests that will identify breast cancer. Often IBC doesn’t even show up on a mammogram.

Enter Terry Lynn Arnold, an IBC survivor. She is so passionate about educating people about IBC that she founded The IBC Network Foundation. The goals of The IBC Network Foundation are, as its website states:

To fund research regarding Inflammatory Breast Cancer.

To provide an avenue to network proactive education to the general population as well as the medical community regarding Inflammatory Breast Cancer.

To offer college scholarship for students who have been impacted by this diagnosis of this aggressive cancer as a way to show support to our Inflammatory Breast Cancer community.

This is a relatively new organization which could sorely use funds to help their efforts. I fully support The IBC Network Foundation and am impressed with the work that Terry Lynn has already accomplished through this foundation. Instead of buying pink items this October, why not send a few dollars to The IBC Network Foundation? Every little bit helps.

Way to go, Terry Lynn, on establishing this foundation and on working to educate people about IBC. As I said, I’m impressed. :)

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Cross-posted to Just Enjoy Him.


Featured Charity: My Hope Chest (by Judy)

October 9, 2011

I recently had the honor of meeting the founder of My Hope Chest which is located in Seminole, FL. Alisa Savoretti, former Las Vegas showgirl, founded My Hope Chest to provide funding for breast cancer survivors who are uninsured, underinsured, or have somehow fallen through the cracks of a system that’s supposed to provide reconstruction if a woman has had a mastectomy.

Alisa was faced with this very dilemma herself in the Fall of 2003 when she had no insurance, had to have a mastectomy, and then was unable to take, as she says:

the final step in breast cancer treatment – restoring body, mind and spirit.

As someone who herself had a mastectomy and then, surprisingly, felt unwhole and ugly without one of my breasts, I underwent three surgeries and several procedures to reconstruct my left breast. I was still left with $4,000.00 that my husband and I have to pay to the hospital out-of-pocket. I appreciate what Alisa and her board do.

Alisa told me that everyone who works with My Hope Chest is a volunteer and the funds go to providing surgeries for women in need. She also told me that this calendar year, they were able to provide surgeries for six women. Remarkable for a small, grassroots organization!

Bravo, Alisa! While I know that reconstruction isn’t for everyone, I believe that women who want their breast(s) reconstucted should have that opportunity.

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Cross-posted to Just Enjoy Him.


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