Sara Martin first joined the Breathing Room family in 2017 when she was battling Breast Cancer. As a high school counselor and mother of two daughters, Sara recalls the constant support of the Breathing Room being extremely helpful.
So, when Sara found out her own mother and friend Peggy volunteered for the Breathing Room’s Back-to-School Program earlier this year, she knew she wanted to do the same and pay forward the support she received during her fight.
This holiday season, Sara is not only sponsoring a family for the Thanksgiving Program but also getting her family involved with the Holiday Program. She and her entire family have decided to join forces and sponsor an entire family for the holidays. Sara shared,
“WE ARE ALL IN. My family saw what I went through, what I needed, and how the Breathing Room responded time and time again. We are so excited to be able to be there for other families going through the same thing I did.”
Sara is just one of many former Breathing Room recipients staying involved in the Breathing Room family as volunteers, even after their own treatment is completed.
All of these former recipient volunteers know how difficult it can be to stay in
the holiday spirit while dealing with the shock of a cancer diagnosis or the chaos of treatment. These former recipient volunteers also know the importance
of community support, like the Breathing Room’s, during these trying times.
To join Sara in bringing holiday cheer to Breathing Room families this season, click here.
Sara and her family celebrating the holiday 2018 season while bringing awareness to cancer with their “Friends don’t let friends fight cancer alone.” T-shirts.
HELP FOR THE HOLIDAYS
Our holiday campaign is underway
One of the most beautiful parts of the Breathing Room’s work is seeing those who have gone through cancer treatment come back to us as volunteers and donors.
Most recently, two local businesses, BBack Car Care in Doylestown, and Ceceilia M. Markham, DMD, an Orthodontist in Warrington, organized events to raise money for the Breathing Room’s work. Bob Back, founder of BBack Car Care, is battling metastasized esophageal cancer. BBack Car Care organized the BBack Car Smash. Participants paid to take out their frustrations by smashing a car with sledge hammers and bats.
As Bob’s daughter told the Breathing Room, “To donate all of the proceeds from our event to your organization would make my Dad very happy.” BBack Car Care raised $2,396 for those going through the same struggles he is facing, in just two hours of car smashing. Dr. Markham, who faced cancer treatment herself, called her patients to action: she offered to match the first $5,000 her patients donated to the Breathing Room over the course of sixty days.
Dr. Markham and her husband Rick expressed,
“We are truly grateful for the support we had during this battle against cancer, however we understand that many are not in the same position. It is our hope that we can provide others with the same support they need during their fight!”
Between her patient’s generous donations and Dr. Markham’s match over $9,500 was raised.
It is grassroots energy that created the Breathing Room and the same grassroots energy that keeps the Breathing Room thriving today.
Volunteers like the Back and Markham families give life to what the Breathing Room values most: volunteers and recipients making up one community, fighting cancer together.
THANKSGIVING 2019 MEALS DELIVERED TO OVER 200 FAMILIES
Thank you to the COUNTLESS volunteers and donors who provided love and support to hundreds of Breathing Room recipients and their families this Thanksgiving. The Breathing Room Foundation families’ words say it best:
“My family would like to say a big thank you for the huge Thanksgiving Dinner delivery that we just received. You bring smiles and a spark of sunshine into what has been a hard journey for all of us. It means so much to me to know that there are so many people out there who care about our journey.”
Corporations Giving Their Gift of Time
to Support Families
Businesses around the world have seen the benefits of employee volunteer activities on their staff, their communities, and even their businesses. Developing employee volunteer programs builds camaraderie, enhances corporate culture, improves employees’ leadership skills, and increases employee engagement.
Few non-profit organizations provide hands-on volunteer opportunities during which corporate volunteers have the opportunity to meet the families they are helping and actually see the impact they are making on their community. The Breathing Room, however, offers just that.For five years, Stantec Architecture has built snack bags for Breathing Room families. As Leslie Whitby, Business Development Manager at Stantec explains,
“At Stantec, we care about the communities we serve, because they’re our communities too. Our Philadelphia team is proud to continue our 5-year relationship with the Breathing Room, donating more than 5,000 snack bags, each with a note of encouragement to help families when they need it most.”
This year, Stantec employees raised $1,600 to assemble 1,500 snack bags for Breathing Room families. Similarly, the BHHS Fox & Roach – Jenkintown employees have chosen the Breathing Room as the beneficiary of their annual Berkshire Hathaway Fox Roach Community Service Day for several years.
This year on their Service day, the group provided homemade meals for Breathing Room families and offered assistance for the Breathing Room’s Designer Bag Bingo fundraiser.
The Breathing Room works closely with corporate groups to plan company service projects that engage your employees in a meaningful way, with a project that meets the immediate needs of our Breathing Room families.
Just 10 months ago, when Lauren Sustersic and Kim D’Ambrosio considered how to use some of their extra energy as empty nesters, they had an idea: Women helping women in Delaware County.
This group collects membership fees and applies those fees to fund grants to nonprofit organizations making a difference for women and families. Within months of its founding, Project W had 57 memberships. The Breathing Room is honored to be one of three organizations recognized for its outstanding work helping to make the lives of women in Delaware County better. Katie Owen, the Breathing Room’s Development Manager reflects,
“My mother always said if you want a job done right give it to a woman, and what these women have been able to accomplish in less than a year is truly astonishing. The Breathing Room Foundation could not be more grateful to be recognized for all we do for women in Delaware County fighting cancer, and we are excited for what our future holds in partnering with such an amazing organization.”
This $7,000 grant will specifically support women facing cancer in Delaware County.
The Breathing Room already supports over 150 families in Delaware County every year, 90% of which are low income families.
In addition to its monetary generosity, Project W members will be donating the gift of their time by volunteering with us and sponsoring a Delaware County family for the Holiday Program.
The Breathing Room cannot thank The Community’s Foundation and the members of Project W enough for their support as this collaboration will help us provide more services to families in the community.
Photo: The Breathing Room Foundation accepting the generous grant from Project W. In the photo (left to right): Breathing Room Foundation President Ryan Galvin, Co-Founder of Project W Lauren Sustersic, Manager of Development for the Breathing Room Foundation Katie Owen, Chairperson for the Family Grant Committee Julie Eble.
Mary Ellen Fitzgerald
The Breathing Room Foundation
8310 Brookside Road
Elkins Park, PA 19027
The Breathing Room Foundation
P.O. Box 287
Jenkintown, PA 19046