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2011 Top-Rated Nonprofit

My Hope Chest

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Breast Cancer, Cancer, Health, Surgical Specialties

Mission: We address the physical and emotional needs of women who have lost their breasts to cancer. Our work restores lives for those that fall through the cracks of medical care.Our mission is to grant these thousands of women nationwide this "Final Step in Breast Cancer Treatment". For those who desire, regaining their physical form absolutely helps the healing process. By restoring their breasts, My Hope Chest helps these survivors return to a normal life with feelings of self-worth, renewed self-confidence and completeness; a true "Celebration of LIFE!"

Target demographics: uninsured and under insured breast cancer survivors

Programs: breast reconstruction surgery, the "final step of breast cancer treatment." Each surgery costs an estimated $13,500 as it is a surgeries of 3 surgeries and spans up to one year.

Community Stories

6 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

2 Laurie41

Client Served

Rating: 5

I was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2004. Of course, I had the mastectomies and chemo and I survived all that, only to find that I was left with a body that didn't even seem human anymore. I was glad to be cancer free, but facing the mutilation every single day was much harder to deal with. No matter how hard I tried to be positive and happy, I still had to look at myself every single day. The depression caused me to gain weight, and I began to withdraw from everyone. I went to work and then home. It's not life, it's just surviving. I had given up on ever having a normal life when a friend told me about My Hope Chest. Just hearing about them caused a tiny light to shine at the end of a long, dark tunnel. I signed up and as I worked with them to get all the paperwork in order, the light got a little brighter. On April 25th, 2012 (yes - I remember that date and always will) I got a call that I was to see a doctor about my reconstruction. The light got a whole lot brighter. I am currently in the process of reconstruction (what a miracle to see what is possible and what skills these doctors have!) and everything seems brighter. The doctor is wonderful and is so caring. Ever step is explained and he makes sure I understand and listens to my feedback. As far as working with the organization itself, their role in my life doesn't stop there. I get phone calls and emails at least once a week to check on my progress and see if there is anything they can do for me. Needless to say. my attitude about myself is changing. I don't hate myself anymore and I am now looking forward to every day instead of dreading it. It has renewed my faith in God that I have been fortunate enough to deal with this group of people and I thank Him that they exist!

1 Kriss F.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I was diagnosed with Breast Cancer in Feb 2012. my fate was to have a double mastectomy. This took place in March 2012. I also had to have all the lymph nodes under my right arm as the cancer had spread. I had Lobular instead of ductal cancer. It was decided that I could not start my reconstruction until I was done with all treatment. I had 8 doses of chemo and had to have one year of Herceptin. I finished treatment in September (the Herceptin was not complete until April 2013) and was ready to start reconstruction. I started the process and had my spacers put in. Shortly after I lost my job and had no funds to pay for the surgeries. By fate I saw an article in a newspaper regarding My Hope Chest. I figured it was worth a shot and gave them a call. They did everything in their power to help me! I had worked with other organizations that made promises and never came thru (this would be the Komen foundation). I am very grateful to My Hope Chest for all their help and support. As I have found, they are not about the money and prestige, they are actually about helping those in need ! I thank them from the bottom of my heart for what they did for me. They are wonderful!

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

My Hope Chest saved my life! After surviving 2 different breast cancers and losing both breasts, I hated my body. I gained weight and saw no reason to lose it. I did not feel attractive and my clothes no longer fit right. When I got the call that my name was at the top of the list for the next surgery I was over the moon. Everything was paid for! the plane to and from New Orleans. Limo rides between lodge to hospital, airport, etc. Every step of the way I was treated like a princess. My attitude has totally changed. I love my body.

Review from Guidestar

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

June 2011 I was diognosed with Breast Cancer at age 45 and was devistated with the thought I was going to loose both of my Breast. When I had my double mastectomy in Sept. of 2011 I just couldnt beleive this was happening to me. I was offered Surgery and reconstruction through a program of a free clinic here in my area. After they removed my Breast I was told that this is cosmestic surgery and they would not be doing my reconstruction and sent me on my way. I was devistated again. Not that I wasnt happy I was breast cancer free, but to think of how I looked to myself, it put me into a deep depsression. I wasnt happy with myself and became distant from my family and freinds. Depression took a toll on me with my work and home life and couldnt seem to get out of it. No matter what people say, its really how you feel yourself.
in 2012 I was introduced to My Hope Chest through a freind. I was so happy to hear there are real people out there that truely care about others.
I was emtremely happy that My Hope Chest came to my rescue. I have met a great surgeon and staff through my Hope Chest, that has been with me through all of the proceedures. I finished my final surgery for reconstruction this month and I am extremely grateful to My Hope Chest and the Surgeons that have helped me feel like a women again. I have my self esteem, and dignity back and without this orginization I dont think I could have gone on much longer.
I am excited to say that MY HOPE CHEST is truely an orginization that really cares and will guide you through it all.

Sincerely
Tina
North Port Fl

Review from Guidestar

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

I am so very thankfull to My Hope Chest for taking an interest in me & my story. I really didn't think I would ever be complete again. Being an uninsured woman, who has lost a breast to cancer, without other means for reconstruction, I felt hopeless. Finding MHC has honestly changed my life for the better in many ways. Thank you Alisa & all yoir Angels.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

I feel as though I won the reconstruction lottery! What an amazing jouney this has been so far. I feel so blessed to have been donated my surgery with the Center for Restorative Breast Surgery in New Orleans and with Dr. Scott Sullivan. Without My Hope Chest, I would not have ever been able to have this done. My surgery was on May 4, 2011... and I feel better than ever. It is such a great thing to have somewhere to turn for help when there seems to be no options at all.