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Pat Holtman

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AMERICAN CANCER SOCIETY FOUNDATION
July 28, 2009

My experience with ACS goes back 15 years. As a volunteer with fundraising events from Relay for Life to MSABC to Cattlebaron's Ball, I quickly learned what a truly caring organization they are. The training provided to me as a volunteer has helped me through the years to provide valuable information to those who hear the words, "you have cancer". When I hear this, I quickly offer up a card from ACS with resource phone #'s and offer to talk with these people about any and all services available to them. When a person feels alone and lost, the staff at ACS are there with heartfelt caring and concern. From those on the other end of the 800# to those in my local ACS office, we are fortunate to have these individuals out there. I was an outsider looking in for a long time, until my sister and mom were diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer at the same time. My ACS volunteer knowledge kicked in right away, after the shock had worn off. They both quickly registered and help was on the way! The Look Good Feel Better program was a boost to my sister's self esteem with the beautiful wigs furnished to her. The Road to Recovery program was there for my mom when I had to work and needed that extra hand. Not only the program, but the drivers compassionate nature made the experience better for my mom, and made me feel comforted to know that someone was helping her when I had obligations to fulfill as well. But most of all, the friendship and support that I was given through ACS staff and other volunteers such as myself will be with me forever. My friends, when asked why they continue to Relay or participate in MSABC will always look at me and say, "because she makes me". But they won't ever quit.... they won't ever give up.... I know this because as I look to the heavens and I hear the voices of my mom and sister who lost their battles, I know they are right beside me listening and ready to give more and more every year! This organization has brought so many lives together. When you see the faces of the survivors at the Relay events, you see the thanks in their eyes, the blessings they send out to everyone standing along that track who is clapping as they pass by. When you go to treatment either yourself or with a loved one, you see that smiling face of your "Road" driver, ready to bring you a glass of water or share some funny stories with you as your body fights the battle. When you have victories, such as a shrinking tumor, your ACS staff partners and volunteers will celebrate with you every step of the way. There may be many great cancer supporting organizations out there, but I don't think there are any that can compare to what the American Cancer Society does each year to make things better. We fight for legislation through Advocacy efforts in Washington, DC at Celebration on the Hill; what a wonderful and impressive event! As I attended this, I was even more thankful that I found this organization who does so much! When I traveled locally to Tallahassee to fight for "Pass the Buck", and previously Amendment 6, I was again reminded of the training and support that ACS provides us as volunteers to MAKE THINGS HAPPEN! I could go on, and I will if you let me, but know that this organization is the best there is! Bless all of them for what they have accomplished and I will continue to help support their mission in an effort to rid us all of this disease. Fighting Cancer Together, Pat Holtman

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

their efforts to "Pass the Buck" and increase the cigarette tax nationwide!

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

be very proud!

More feedback

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

the comraderie of staff to volunteers and the true caring and support that they show us as volunteers.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

caring, compassionate, strong and willing to fight!

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

eliminate cancer in our lifetime through advocacy, education and support to all American citizens.

Ways to make it better...

I had started helping even sooner!

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

the need to keep fighting for research opportunities.

One thing I'd also say is that...

I am forever grateful for all they have done for me and my family.

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

MY ROLE:
Volunteer & Relay, MSABC, Cattlebarons, local Board chair, and more.