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Mission of Hope Cancer Fund Brings Relief to Those Affected by Cancer in Michigan

Cancer hits close to home for many people. You may know someone affected by cancer: a coworker, a family member, a friend. It may be yourself. Unfortunately, cancer has likely affected most, if not all, people in some way.

Sara Cyphers, Secretary (left) and Maria Ethridge, Executive Director (right)

You’ve probably heard of the 5Ks, the fundraisers, the GoFundMe pages, but have you heard of Mission of Hope Cancer Fund? A local nonprofit determined to help those affected by cancer. Mission of Hope Cancer Fund is made up of a dynamic duo, Executive Director, Maria Ethridge, and her secretary Sara Cyphers. Along with Maria and Sarah, there are eight members that sit on the Board of Directors. These board members offer support in many areas, including helping at events and visiting patients.

Maria stepped into the role of Executive Director recently. With experience working in education and human services and substance abuse, Maria has always had a passion for helping people. The essence of helping people has always been her focus, so when the opportunity came for her to alleviate one of the most stressful components of people’s lives, becoming the Executive Director of MHCF was perfect for her.

MHCF provides direct financial assistance, starting with something as simple as an online form. It’s easy, and only takes about ten minutes to complete once a doctor confirms the diagnosis. From there, MHCF is able to provide assistance for medical bills, insurance, supplies, and field costs. There are countless great things about what MHCF does, but to name a few, MHCF is able to assist with every type of cancer. Whatever diagnosis you or someone you love may have, MHCF is able to help in some way. It can be as small as providing a gas card to get patients to and from chemotherapy, and as large as assisting with medical expenses.

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Recently, the MHCF put on Concert for a Cause at the Michigan Theatre, where guests enjoyed an evening out featuring bands such as B!g L Code Blu & Kung Fu Diesel. Maria recalled that she heard stories of patients experiencing a sense of normalcy at the concert for the first time since their diagnosis. Another concert patron was struggling with her husband’s diagnosis, and the Concert for a Cause gave her reason to enjoy a girls’ night out.

In the future, MHCF hopes to continue to build their existing programs, like Concert for a Cause. They are also looking to expand their travel program. This could be ways to cover travel costs for patients going to and from treatments, or even having volunteers drive patients who are incapable of driving themselves. They hope to get out into the community more and connect people with MHCF. Maria and Sara have found that so many community members want to find ways to help, and MHCF is looking to give back in a similar way. With the state of the world being what it is, we need each other, and need to help in any way we are capable.

Maria and Sara have helped a number of patients, from the newly diagnosed who are overwhelmed with the treatments ahead, or a family member who is struggling with support. In many situations, friends and family of those with cancer want to help, but don’t know what they can do; Mission of Hope does. Sara explained that Maria is incredible with clients and patients, and always knows exactly what to say. If MHCF can’t assist you with exactly what you’re looking for, they will point you in the direction of a nonprofit who can.

Mission of Hope Cancer Fund is always accepting donations to continue offering assistance to cancer patients and those affected by this disease. To donate, click here.

If you or someone you know could benefit from the help Mission of Hope Cancer fund provides, click here. Mission of Hope is always open to community members to get involved and are always looking to partner with fundraising. If you hope to get involved in Mission of Hope Cancer Fund, you can reach Maria at mhcf@cancerfund.org.