My husband and I had the very fortunate opportunity to become volunteers with an organization called CanCare in March of 2018.
What Is It?
CanCare is a non-profit cancer support service. The mission is to improve the quality of life for cancer survivors and their families.
CanCare was first started in Houston, Texas. The organization now has over 600 trained volunteers. Many of these volunteers have survived cancer. The volunteers are matched with clients who are experiencing the same or a very similar cancer. Clients are also matched to volunteers based on other criteria such as; location, similar treatment, age, and gender. The volunteers represent more than 75 different cancer types.
CanCare volunteers provide one on one emotional support. This support can be by phone, text, email or in person. This support may also be once or may develop into an ongoing relationship. This is totally dependent on the client.
A very important part of going though the journey of cancer is the ongoing support and help of caregivers. Caregivers are often those loved ones or family members, such as a spouse, child or parent. Likewise, caregivers can also be close friends or other relatives. However, in any event caregivers need support as well. Your cancer journey can be just as difficult and emotional for your caregiver. CanCare is here to help.
Unfortunately for my husband and I, we did not learn about CanCare during OUR journey. Once we learned of the organization we immediately knew we wanted to give back in this way. We wanted to help other families get through the journey by being that listening ear and glimmer of hope. As volunteers, we know how beneficial it would have been to have someone support us during this journey. Make no mistake we had the support of our family during such a tough time. In light of that, what was missing was the support of someone who had actually been on our same journey firsthand.
Like myself, my husband was not interested in support groups. We did not want to sit in the room of other like ourselves comparing stories. Nonetheless, many people find that support groups meets their need. On the contrary, CanCare is different since it provides one on one support
Through CanCare, my husband and I are now blessed to be able to support five people, to date, on their journeys.
CanCare is a self referral program, therefore if you or someone you know has been diagnosed with any type of cancer, please encourage them to reach out to CanCare. Likewise, if you know someone who is a caregiver to someone diagnosed this cancer, encourage them to reach out to CanCare as well. Emotional support goes a long way and can often help survivors and caregivers get through the physical challenges a little better.
Race For The Cure
On September 22, 2018 the annual Susan G. Komen Race For The Cure, was held in Charleston, South Carolina. The Race For The Cure is held annually in support of breast cancer awareness, research, education, and advocacy. The race itself is actually a series of 5K runs and walks. The Race For The Cure is an opportunity to show your support of family and friends who have been diagnosed with breast cancer. In addition to showing support, it is also a good way to learn more about the disease, above all.
The Race For The Cure was started in 1983 with 800 participants in Dallas, Texas. Over the years the movement has spread globally to more than 1.6 million participants across four continents. This year it is expected that there will be 140 races globally. Although events are unique in each country, however they all share the same goal.
This year, as well as the past 2 years, I have had the honor to participate alongside my family, in the Race For The Cure. Like every year, it is heart filling to be amongst a sea of pink shirts and pink ribbons, gathered together for one cause. Moreover, it is a reminder of the battle that myself and so many other courageous women also fought.
Find a race in a city near you to show your support for breast cancer. Every two minutes a woman is the US is diagnosed with breast cancer. Furthermore remember that one in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetime. Become educated. Learn about the disease, so that you are aware of your risk factors.