Heart disease runs in my family history so I've always been careful to eat a healthy diet and have some sort of cardiovascular workout five or six days a week. Given my healthy lifestyle and my feeling fine, I was quite shocked to be diagnosed with stage 4 mantle cell lymphoma last year. Fortunately, I have a strong faith in God, as well as a very supportive and encouraging family and friends who continue to help me deal with the ups and downs of having a life threating illness. Also, I am greatly appreciative to have received a patient grant from GCCF to help with expenses related to my lymphoma treatments. My maximum out of pocket insurance expenses were quickly reached and travel expenses really added up as I received chemotherapy, a bone marrow transplant, and radiation treatments during the past year. Thankfully, GCCF's grant helped relieve some of the financial burden of my illness, so I could focus on doing the things needed to help me get better. Thank you GCCF!
GCCF has helped me by giving me a scholarship that sent me to a ten day medical program to build my experiences and knowledge on what I want to do with my life; Pediatric Oncology. The scholarship sent me to Washington D.C. to attend the National Youth Leadership Forum on Medicine where I spent ten days watching surgeries, seeing hospitals, touring medical schools, listening to medical professors lecture, and diving deeper into medicine than I ever have before. This awesome experience made me certain that I want to continue on to the medical field and pursue a career in Pediatric Oncology.
I never expected to be diagnosed with breast cancer when I was 22 weeks pregnant with our first child. We had spent so much time preparing for the baby, making sure we were financially ready and simply being excited and dreaming of the future with our little one. The cancer diagnosis wasn’t even part of our vocabulary. After the initial shock wore off we realized that while we were financially ready for the baby, the added expenses of cancer treatment would put a strain on our family. GCCF was able to offer a grant to help us with the unforeseen financial strain that comes with cancer. Things like gas money and toll money to get back and forth to Orlando at least a couple times a week for 9 months, prescription medication that is out of pocket, etc. The grant also helped ease the fear that if I ran out of sick time at my job that I would be okay for a while even though I had stopped getting paid. I am so thankful for the support provided by GCCF because of the peace of mind they were able to provide for me in such a terribly frightening time.