The DONNA Foundation Celebrates Survivorship and Encourages Action During Breast Cancer Awareness Month
Organization seeks to raise awareness and financial support in October
JACKSONVILLE, FLA. (September 28, 2020) – Throughout the coronavirus pandemic, the DONNA Foundation has been working harder than ever before to support those living with breast cancer.
One in five families served by The DONNA Foundation since March 2020 reported financial issues as a direct result of the pandemic. Over the past two months, The DONNA CareLine has seen a 78% increase in call volume and requests – by patients, family members and caregivers – for financial assistance for medical expenses, food and shelter, with nearly 200 calls for help in August alone.
This increase in demand builds upon a monumental year for the organization. In its last program year, which closed after February’s DONNA Marathon Weekend, The DONNA Foundation:
- Served more than 1,000 breast cancer patients and families through The DONNA CareLine
- Resolved nearly 2,000 financial issues for breast cancer patients, most related to cost of living and debt crises (62% of reported issues)
- Orchestrated nearly 14,000 activities, ranging from phone calls and health care applications to email messages, on behalf of breast cancer patients
- Secured more than $550,000 in financial support for breast cancer patients and their families, including $88,000 in direct financial aid to pay for expenses such as rent, mortgage, groceries, transportation to treatment and utilities
In addition to the spike in financial challenges, individuals at risk of breast cancer are delaying or foregoing screenings. According to The New York Times, health care organizations, such as the Mayo Clinic (which receives research funding through The DONNA Foundation) and the Cleveland Clinic, have reported a 45% decrease in new cancer diagnoses this year. It is expected that this will result in a spike in diagnoses and need for support once people return to screening with regular doctor appointments.
As Breast Cancer Awareness Month begins, The DONNA Foundation invites supporters to join its “Everywhere, Together” virtual race and fundraising campaign to raise awareness and funds for critical support services that aid patients from diagnosis through survivorship.
“Every day, our staff and supporters join the brave patients and families we serve in choosing love over fear. This year has brought new fears to the forefront, but it has also created boundless opportunities to show love by stepping forward in support of our mission,” said Amanda Napolitano, Executive Director of The DONNA Foundation. “Breast Cancer Awareness Month will look different this year, as we forego in-person events to instead focus on our ‘Everywhere, Together’ campaign. But we are more confident than ever that even in this time of social distancing, we are united in our nationwide commitment to finishing breast cancer.”
Registration is now open for THE PLAYERS Virtual DONNA 5K, presented by Nimnicht Family of Dealerships. The race weekend will take place October 24-25; and will be delivered to neighborhoods nationwide in a celebratory, virtual way.
“We are proud to support THE PLAYERS DONNA 5k and look forward to seeing many participants from all over the world cross the virtual finish line on October 24-25,” said Jared Rice, Executive Director of THE PLAYERS Championship. “As the PGA TOUR’s flagship event, our team continues to focus on needs beyond our sport to ensure the health, safety and well-being of all. We maintain our commitment to our Northeast Florida community and nonprofit organizations like The DONNA Foundation, which plays a crucial role in positively impacting countless lives in the First Coast and beyond.”
Other ways to support The DONNA Foundation during Breast Cancer Awareness Month include:
- Training for the 14th Annual DONNA Virtual Marathon Weekend, February 12-14, 2021 and participating in the Everywhere, Together fundraising campaign launch on October 1;
- Joining The DONNA Foundation’s 1912 Giving Society, a monthly giving program that provides a family with case management services through The DONNA CareLine for as little as $19 a month;
- Registering for the DONNA Mother’s Day Your Way virtual race weekend, scheduled for May 8-9, 2021; or
- Be fearless, do all three DONNA events (participating in THE PLAYERS Virtual DONNA 5K, training and registering for DONNA Virtual Marathon Weekend, and registering for the DONNA Mother’s Day Your Way race weekend)
“I want to send my most sincere and deep thanks to The DONNA Foundation, The DONNA CareLine and the DONNA Financial Aid Fund for the unreserved compassion and concern during this extremely turbulent time we currently face,” said Coren, a DONNA CareLine recipient. “Thank you for all that you do for our population overall. You have no idea how much your grant support means to me at this juncture.”
For more information, including event registration details, visit TheDONNAFoundation.org.
About The DONNA Foundation:
The DONNA Foundation was established in June of 2003 by three-time breast cancer survivor and award-winning journalist Donna Deegan to meet the critical financial needs of the underserved living with breast cancer. Our mission is to provide financial assistance and support to individuals living with breast cancer and fund groundbreaking breast cancer research. To date, the DONNA Foundation has served more than 14,000 families, securing more than $500,000 in financial services and debt relief each year. The organization has also disbursed more than $3 million to develop and maintain the Mayo Clinic Translational Genomics Program. The organization also operates events and programs for survivorship, education and awareness. For more information, visit www.TheDONNAFoundation.org.