Komen For the Cure? We Are Pink For People at You Can Thrive!
by Luana DeAngelis, YCT Founder
BRAVO to the world for waking up about charity funding profit. Bravo!!
It is about time the people stopped to think about where that pink money goes. Billions of charity dollars are spent and where does it go? What does it get us?
As someone deeply entrenched in the cancer community working with women every day who are living through the despair of dealing with cancer and it’s ongoing effects, and sometimes, far to often, it’s deadly consequences. I see every day, first-hand the struggles that people with cancer endure. The costs of co-pays, the stress to keep up with bills when treatment pre-empts the ability to work, the side effects, the mental anxiety and distress. I see the faces of these women when they are green from treatments and begging for mercy, just wanting their lives back. They NEED help.
When I was diagnosed at 35 I reached out to Komen. I asked them for help, I shared my story. The person on the other end of the line; whether she was well paid or a volunteer, she was pretty blunt. She told me “we don’t’ do that”. I said “what do you mean? You’re Komen! You don’t help a young woman with breast cancer?” Crushing my hopes, she stated “No.” I said, “well then where does all that money go?” She then stated, “look it up.” I DID.
And it pissed me off. I started to see this trail. This outpouring of pink funding from people who cared, people who walked, and people who asked their people to HELP in the name of someone they knew who was struggling. Every one of those private donors probably thought of someone just like ME when they wrote that check.
Yet the money trail that I saw went pretty much directly to our medical system (which was worth 52 billion in 2008). Fine, thank you, we need screening (American Cancer Society will give anyone free screening any day of the week), we need well designed research, but we also need HELP!! If you’ve ever been sick in this country, I mean REALLY sick then you know that not only is the hospital a scary place, based on getting paid by insurance and the patients, it’s also really about critical care. Curing the symptom.
But healing goes far deeper then that. Healing is something that happens in an environment where you feel safe. Healing can happen regardless of the course of the disease, which sometimes you cannot change. Healing, is addressing the physical and psychological causes and effects of dis-ease. Our medical community is currently not trained to deal with the WHOLE patient, they must specialize, holistic it’s not their thing, and answering questions about quality of life services, and modalities, puts them in liability. Even if the institution does have an ‘integrative center’ it’s too prohibitive financially for about 88% of patients (according to a poll I did after my diagnosis).
Today I want to THANK Komen. Because it was them who made me see that we needed to do MORE. I made it my business to do exactly that, using my generational background in natural health to create a new paradigm for the future of aftercare. Today we have hundreds of volunteers and a generous 10,000 sq ft space in Union Square NYC. All provided by PEOPLE who care about PEOPLE with cancer. Avon Foundation for Women has signed on to support our independent patient navigation program, enveloping survivors, especially those women who do not feel safe enough for medical care and guiding them to better outcomes. We’ve now built an entire foundation of people who are bonded together to work every week, to help their neighbors access real services that provide relief “when they need it most and can afford it least”. Today there is a new movement in health care, and a novel idea in charity. To actually provide FOR FREE wellness and preventative services that people need most after cancer to THRIVE! Support a charity that supports PEOPLE with cancer. Be a part of this movement because it is the future and you are the people.
Thank you to all the volunteers and those who have had their hands on this movement. Thanks to all the Thrivers who have come through this program and made it their cause to give back for the woman diagnosed behind them. Thank YOU for caring enough to read this.
Our pledge: 100% of your donation will go to a program that will directly effect someone going through breast cancer. 100% period. Provide relief!
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