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Annie’s Fund Provides Assistance to Cancer Patient and Her Family

Not long after Maria’s 16 year old daughter Julia was diagnosed with kidney cancer and placed on a transplant waiting list, the family received more devastating news.  Julia also had Hodgkin’s Lymphoma and was now ineligible for a life-saving kidney transplant. Her only treatment option was chemotherapy and radiation which she received at a hospital that was about 90 miles away from their home.

Julia’s illness impacted the family profoundly. Not only were they dealing with the heartbreak of a critical illness and difficult prognosis, but now they also faced a financial crisis. Travel costs, substantial medical bills and day-to-day living expenses totaled more than the family’s meager income. Maria soon found herself in the untenable situation of having to choose between her daughter’s medical needs and paying her monthly rent. But Maria persevered. She began to search for monetary assistance and enlisted the help of her caseworker.  When Maria’s caseworker applied to Annie’s Fund for assistance Maria owed $2,000 in rent payments. Annie’s Fund provided critical intervention helping Maria avert a financial crisis eliminating the threat of homelessness during a time of extreme need.

Maria later wrote to us stating, "Many years ago … a co-worker thought it would be good if I apply {for Annie’s Fund} to finish my B.A. but my response was to leave it for someone else who may need it more. Who was to know that this same grant that I turned down… would be the one to give us a huge relief in our life?"  Maria also said that the grant took a "huge load" off her shoulders. "My plan is to continue to [reassure] my family that everything is going to be OK."

Women’s Fund Grants Making a Difference for Families

Health Friends is a program that provides immediate and long-term prescription medication for people without prescription insurance and without the means to purchase medication needed to achieve and maintain good health. Last year, The Women’s Fund was proud to provide Health Friends with a grant to assist women and children in need of critical prescription medication. "Janelle" is just one of the many women who has received much-needed assistance through Health Friends.
When Janelle lost her job she was disappointed to learn that her income was just over the limit for Child Health Plus and other supplemental programs."  Suddenly, just after losing her health insurance, Janelle’s son became very ill.  Janelle said "I could tell by the way he was breathing that something wasn’t right". An emergency room visit revealed that her son had puemonia and a double ear infection and would require medications costing over $500.

With nowhere to turn and no money to pay for life-saving medications, Janelle was referred to Health Friends. Health Friends paid for the medication and Janelle’s son was soon well enough to return to school. 

Janelle now has a secure career with good health benefits. But she has not forgotten about the help she received in during a difficult time. Janelle says the support she received from Health Friends lifted her spirits. "A peace came over me," she said, "to know that my child would recover meant the world to me."

The Women’s Fund is dedicated to helping women like Maria and Janelle provide stable, healthy lives for their families. We are proud to have a made a significant difference in the lives of these women during a time of crisis and great emotional stress.  These are just two of the women who have benefited from the over $250,000 The Women’s Fund has granted over the last fourteen years.

If you would like to help local women as they strive to build a better life for themselves and their children click here to learn more about how you can make a tax deductible donation to The Women’s Fund.