Month: August 2011

Francine’s Friends Aims to Raise $50,000 in 50 Days for a New Coach

In 2005, when Francine’s Friends was established, a refurbished coach was purchased and at that time, the coach was given a 5 to 7 year span for productive service. As the organization works through its 6th year, it is experiencing unscheduled maintenance issues that keep the coach off the road and unable to serve the women in our communities.

Francine’s Friends has been quietly raising funds to purchase a new coach. True to the spirit of its name sake, Francine Schubert who always met challenges with enthusiasm and determination, the organization has raised all but $50,000 of its goal! On August 19th, Francine’s Friends kicked off the “50 in 50” campaign on to raise that final $50,000 in 50 days!

You can support the campaign by donating at the following businesses- just drop your donation in the donation box: Cindy Friend Lifestyle Studio, Jophiels, Lopshire Flowers, Susan’s, Woodhouse Spa, Anytime Fitness on Dupont, Best Buy at Northcrest, Cardinal Fitness on Illinois and on Maplecrest, Casa’s, Chick Fil-A, Cookie Cottage, various Curves locations throughout NE Indiana, Elegant Occasions, Fort Wayne Urban League, Fresh Market, Friends & Friends Too, Lifecare of LaGrange, McMahon Tire, Milan Center & Feed, Minnie’s Diner, Northview Inn & Suites, Peerless Cleaners, Pine Ridge Raquet & Fitness, PNC in Woodburn, The Vitamin Shoppe, and Trendsetters Hair Design.

For more information, visit

We Heart Our Volunteer Receptionists

by Cheryl Dafforn, volunteer coordinator

Our Volunteer Receptionists: back (L-R) Cheryl Milligan, Donna Kaiser, Susan Terfler, Marianne Platt, Courtney Haslup, Gayle Smith; front (L-R) Hermine van Nuis, Stephanie Beck, Nanci Gilbert

Each day we have volunteers who come in to help us at the reception area. On Wednesday, August 17, all nine of our faithful and dedicated volunteer receptionists gathered together to meet one another.

It was marvelous to see ALL of them gathered together and sharing ideas with each other on things they have found helpful and talk about some of the challenges they face. They shared with each other why they are committed to Cancer Services and brainstormed ways to enhance our services to clients. These are by far the most amazing individuals you will ever meet, and I am proud to have them as part of our Cancer Services Team!

Cancer Services Quilt- Help Needed!

We are creating a quilt and we need your help!

For our annual auction, which will take place in February 2012, we will auction off a quilt made from squares designed by cancer survivors and volunteers.

Want to be a part of it?

You can pick up your square from Cancer Services beginning September 1, 2011, and let your imagination take it from there. Honor a loved one who has been touched by cancer.

You may use any type of permanent media like markers, crayons, stitching, etc. You can even embellish the square with 3-D materials like beads and ribbons. Just remember that all material must be washable.

Your square must be returned to us no later than January 23 to ensure that the quilt can be assembled in time for our event.

If you are interested in participating, please contact Linda Bewley at or (260) 484-9560. Or simply stop in and pick up a square.

Cirque du Soleil Ticket Proceeds to Benefit Cancer Services

The opening sequence of "Cirque du Soleil"

Our friends at The Memorial Coliseum are donating a percentage of the ticket sales from select upcoming performances of Cirque du Soleil to to Cancer Services.

To take advantage of this opportunity, patrons may choose to follow one of these options:

1) Purchase tickets online below by clicking on the individual dates. Enter CSNI as the password and you will gain access to ticket pricing. Convenience fees will apply and those fees are not part of the commissionable revenue.

2) At the Coliseum Ticket Office by mentioning “Cancer Services.” No convenience fees here.

Shows eligible for the charitable donation include:

  1. Wednesday, September 21 at 7:30pm
  2. Thursday, September 22 at 7:30pm
  3. Sunday, September 25 at 1:00pm
  4. Sunday, September 25 at 5:00pm

The base group prices (purchased at ticket office) are $87.50, $58.25, $43.25, $28.25. The 3:30pm show Friday is discounted further: $68.50, $54.50, $40.50, $26.50.

We’d like to thank the Memorial Coliseum for choosing us for this event and appreciates their continued support of what we try to do for the people in our community.

Regina’s Life Lesson #22: Over prepare, then go with the flow

Between now and October 13, our employees, volunteers and clients will share some of their thoughts and reflections on Regina Brett’s life lessons. Today, outreach coordinator, Linda Bewley, shares her thoughts on Life Lesson #22: Over prepare, then go with the flow.

Laura and Linda Bewley

“With the wedding of my only daughter coming up in less than 2 months, we are all in preparation mode! Invitations, flowers, music, ceremony, photography, reception……and on it goes.

Often I wake up in the middle of the night thinking of little things that just have to be taken care of. If I had a pen and paper by my bed to write it down, that would be great, but I don’t, so in the morning I fret about that “thing” I thought of at 2 am that I can no longer remember.

I know I will be over-prepared for all but one thing — my 2 ½ year old granddaughter will be in the wedding and like all 2 year olds, she has a mind of her own. I’ve told the bride to be prepared for whatever she does, and she assures me she will be. Now, if I can only follow my own advice, and go with the flow, whatever that may be, I will have a wonderful day.”

~ Linda Bewley, outreach coordinator

A Time to Reflect- An Intern’s Last Day

by Nick Kight, 2011 summer intern

Here’s a little background about me: I lost my grandfather to liver cancer my senior year of high school. That was the first time I dealt with loss and death that hit so close to home. To this day, it’s weird not having him there at the dinner table during the holidays playing Euchre with the rest of the family. I remember him cracking jokes, and I could see this remarkably ornery look on his face. He would look directly at me, and we would share these moments where I just thought to myself, “you’re silly, grandpa.” I would love to have one of those moments with him again.

I’ll never forget the pain and sadness in my mother’s face when I asked her how she was doing with grandpa’s death. My mother doesn’t cry in front of me much, but when those tears started flowing, I knew that was the hardest time in her life. Not only was she a wife, a mother to three boys, a working woman, but also a daughter about to lose her father. I could see how overwhelmed she was. When I learned about the services and support Cancer Services provides to the people affected by cancer in the community, I wanted to help. Cancer Services does an amazing job alleviating some of those emotional and financial burdens, and I knew this was something I wanted to be a part of.

I can’t believe it’s almost been a year since I first walked through the door at Cancer Services. I came here with my public relations practicum class to learn about what Cancer Services does for the community. We also came to see if there was anyway our class could host a 3rd party fundraiser for Amber and Cancer Services, but that’s a story for another time.

First let me start with my initial impression of Amber. I remember thinking how energetic she was and genuine when she first met our class. I could easily tell Amber loved her job. The inflection and pitch in her voice went up and down as she listed off all of her responsibilities. Let me share something with you all. This woman is passionate about her job. I’ve met many people who see their job as a paycheck. I can assure you, this is not Amber. She has such a heart for those afflicted and burdened by cancer. You should just see her to-do list. Trust me, it’s long and appears to be never-ending, but she comes in everyday with a smile on her face and a positive attitude.

I remember when Amber gave my class and I the official tour of the facility back in October. I was impressed by the mission of Cancer Services, the cleanliness of the facility, and like I already mentioned, Amber herself. Amber mentioned how she needed interns for the upcoming year, and even though I did not tell her right then and there, I knew I wanted to come back here one day and intern with her.

I am grateful for the time I have been able to spend at Cancer Services this summer. This summer has flown by so quickly. As I sit here typing, I can’t even believe this is my last day. I have learned so much from my time here and hope to use that knowledge wherever God may lead me next. Amber has been a wonderful supervisor. She assigns me projects and blogs out the wazoo, and whenever I have a question about public relations, she is always ready and willing to give me an answer. She also has always treated me with kindness and warmth. I have never once felt intimidated by Amber. Everyday when I walk in, she always asks me how I am doing and greets me with a smile. I hope that if I am ever in a position where I am supervising others, I can treat them as kindly as Amber has treated me. She has prepared me well to head out into the real world in a year’s time and dive into the public relations world. I know Amber will be someone who I can always call upon when I need a mentor’s advice and opinion.

Overall, I’ve enjoyed my time at Cancer Services. All of the staff have been nothing but kind to me, and Amber kept me busy posting blogs, writing press releases, and creating graphic design materials. I appreciate the opportunity Amber gave me to be a part of an organization that does good for the community. I just hope in some way, my contributions will help Cancer Services in their mission to help people.

Cancer Services…it’s been real. Thank you all for everything. Keep in touch!

~ Nick Kight, 2011 summer intern

Birthday Girl Surprises Cancer Services

Amber Nelson (middle) holds the $100 donation she gave to CSNI with the support from her mother and friends.

by Nick Kight, marketing intern

The receptionist unlocked the door. The staff members rushed to their desks to answer e-mails. The telephone rang, and the person on the other end was transferred to the person they wished to speak to. It was a typical day at Cancer Services, but at 11:40 a.m. on Aug. 4, something unexpected happened.

Amber Nelson of Bluffton, Ind., walked into Cancer Services with her mom and a group of friends. Amber was celebrating her 13th birthday, and her mom took her and her friends to Fort Wayne for the day to celebrate. They had one stop to make though before the celebrations could commence. Amber wanted to donate the $100 she collected to help support our cause here at Cancer Services.

Amber began collecting loose change, and whenever she found some, she placed the change into a jar. She gathered $100 in change and donated the money to us.

I think back to when I was a kid, and if I ever saved up $100, I would like to think that I would have donated the money, but since I strive to be honest, I have to admit I probably would have wasted my money away on Pokemon cards or something. I find it amazing to see a 13-year-old, on her own accord, willingly separate herself from a Ben Franklin. Amber Nelson has such a heart, and we at Cancer Services cannot thank her enough for being so selfless and helping us financially support our mission to assist those diagnosed with cancer.

Amber mentioned she hopes to continue finding loose change around the house and would like to bring the jar back to Cancer Services every time she collects $100.

On behalf of Cancer Services, we wish you a VERY HAPPY 13TH BIRTHDAY Amber!

Regina’s Life Lesson #26: “In five years, will this matter?”

Between now and October 13, our employees, volunteers and clients will share some of their thoughts and reflections on Regina Brett’s life lessons. Today, client advocate, Peter Alberson, shares his thoughts on Life Lesson #26: Frame every so called disaster with these words: In five years, will this matter?

Peter Alberson, client advocate

“The statement, ‘In five years, will this matter?’ is one that my wife and I have adopted to help us assess the importance of some of the calamities we have experienced. I know that at the time of the disaster, it is hard to gain this perspective. But when viewed from the perspective of the long-term effects, many of these disasters are seen as temporary set-backs. Whether being down-sized at work or experiencing a calamity of a more personal nature, this perspective has helped us see that some of those possible anxiety producing situations really won’t have a long-term effect and can be weathered by trusting in the One who holds our lives in His hands. When looking back on some of those disasters, we realize that we became stronger in our faith, closer to each other, and found what great support we really have from friends and other loved ones. Were those experiences pleasant? Not in the least! But they have served to help us have more compassion and empathy for others who are going through trying times. ‘In five years, will this matter,’ is a good measuring device for discerning what actually is important and helps us not sweat the small stuff. There is One who will give ‘beauty for ashes and the oil of joy in place of mourning.’”

~ Peter Alberson, Client Advocate

2011 Alvin and Madeline Strauss Memorial Symposium

Monica Fawzy Bryant, Cancer Legal Resource Center

We will host the 2011 Alvin and Madeline Strauss Education Memorial Symposium for professionals on Sept. 9, 2011.

This year’s speaker will be Monica Fawzy Bryant, Esq. of the Cancer Legal Resource Center. Ms. Bryant will deliver her presentation, “Cancer and the Law and Understanding Health Care Reform.”

The presentation will educate attendees about the various resources professionals can recommend to patients regarding various issues and will discuss the affects of health care reform on patients and professionals.

This seminar is for social workers, case managers, nurses and other professionals who work with cancer patients and their families. Application for 3.0 continuing education units has been made for nurses, social workers, case managers, and lawyers.

The cost to attend is $35, which includes breakfast, symposium and continuing education units. The deadline to register is September 1.

The symposium will take place at the Holiday Inn located at 4111 Paul Shaffer Drive Fort Wayne, Ind. 46825 and will begin promptly at 8:30 a.m.

To register online and purchase a ticket, click here.

A special session, “Cancer and the Law,” will be offered for our clients on September 8 from 6:30 to 8 PM at our facility. Please call (260) 484-9560 for more information or to reserve your spot.

Regina’s Life Lesson #27- Always Choose Life

by Gail Hamm, program director

This morning, I want to reflect on one of Regina Brett’s Life Lessons: Always choose life. I’d like to change the word from “life” to “living”. I say this because it’s so easy to stop living while still being alive. By that I mean going through the motions as if one is living, but not really being engaged or conscious or aware of each moment. This often occurs because of trauma, which causes a person to become stuck in time. Having a loved one die, being diagnosed with a terminal illness, or being traumatized through an accident or military experience are examples of incidents which can cause “stuckness”. There is so much to experience in life, and time is so short, that it’s really a great waste of human potential when a person stops living each moment. We have a tag line here at Cancer Services: count moments count moments count moments count moments. It can be read as count moments or moments count. “Always choose life” means that moments count, so don’t miss them!