Greetings and Happy Spring!
Tulips are always a ‘sign’ of Hope and Celebration for Jack and I . It will be our 32nd Anniversary on May 26th and Jack was diagnosed with myeloma a month before our wedding, April 20th, 1991. So, we Celebrate Twice!
We were fortunate that Jack was diagnosed ‘early’ and correctly. And, we were inspired and encouraged by Dr. Rafael Fonseca, who was starting the myeloma department at Mayo, and Jeff Trent,Ceo of TGen, who was doing myeloma research with Mayo. They asked me to help them organize a myeloma ‘education’ program for patients and families, which I did. We then registered as a 501c3 cancer charity, in 2004, and became Arizona Myeloma Network, AzMN™, and provided the Annual Living with Myeloma Conferences and Research Roundtables. And, in 2007, we added our Cancer Caregivers Education Programs, CCEP™, for All Cancer Patients and Caregivers.
All of that changed in 2020 when COVID closed down ‘in person’ meetings. And we realized that we needed a ‘new’ way to reach the thousands of cancer patients and caregivers who became even more isolated during this devastating time in our Country. So, we have developed and now ‘Launched’ the 1st online/virtual Cancer Caregivers Education Program.
And, this Spring, we achieved another milestone. On Saturday, March 25th, we held the 1st ‘Hybrid’, AzMN/MMRF, Cancer Patient and Caregivers Conference- both ‘in person’, at the Embassy Suites-Hilton in Scottsdale, and ‘on-line’. MMRF, the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation, has been a longtime Partner of AzMN’s and has supported our commitment to collaboration of cancer resources on behalf of myeloma and All cancer patients and families.
It was an exciting day with wonderful presentations from the leading Myeloma/Hematology Specialists and Researchers. And, the introduction of our new online Cancer Caregivers Education Program, CCEP™. There were ‘75 plus’ patients, caregivers and families, exhibitors, staff, and volunteers, participating in person and another 270 from all over the Country joining us online. To view the Conference, you can go to the MMRF website or use This Link.
Meanwhile, you can learn more about this innovative program and meet Jack and I at our exhibit table at the IronwoodCRC Survivor’s Breakfast on Saturday, March 29th, 9 am-12noon. They are located at 5810 W. Beverly Lane, in Glendale. It is an outdoor event with a great breakfast and face painting for family fun. We look forward to meeting other cancer patients and families, like ‘ours’, and sharing information about our new online program and inviting them to ‘register’.
We are planning additional presentations in the community and also at cancer facilities throughout Arizona. We are ‘rolling out’ the program in Arizona now, and will be making it available for cancer caregivers in New Mexico and the Southwest, later this summer, as well as additional States in the Fall.
The response to our online CCEP Program has been amazing. Our new virtual program offers the following features:
Lesson Plans that increase the knowledge and build the skills of the cancer caregiver helping a family member, friend, neighbor, or ‘team’ of helpers in the community.
A Cancer Resource Library with information and resources that are available for the cancer patient/caregiver…’ all in one place’ and both State and National.
A Cancer Care Community which is online 24/7 where the cancer patient/caregiver can share their thoughts and experiences. This Virtual Cancer Caregiver Community has the support of a qualified healthcare professional who can also provide specific information and resources as needed.
For more details and to register, cancer patients, caregivers, families, and organizations can go to our website: www.cancercaregiversaz.com.
We hope that our program can help guide you and your loved one on this Cancer Journey. We know that we have been ‘blessed’ to have had such wonderful help and resources. And, that Jack’s courage, our Love, and the support of so many people, has allowed us to help others as well. You are not Alone…’We’ are Here and so is our online program!