Lung Cancer Is My Cause

Last updated: November 2021

We all have certain causes that we fundraise for. When I was younger, I was a girl scout and we worked on community projects. As I grew older, I found myself more dedicated to animal welfare and suicide prevention. Now that I have been diagnosed with lung cancer, I have focused my efforts on raising funds for lung cancer research and awareness.

What is my why?

Let’s start with the why. More people in the United States die from lung cancer than any other type of cancer.1 Lung cancer research has come a long way even since I was diagnosed in 2014. I have witnessed the emergence of immunotherapy as well as the development of many targeted therapies. All very many years in the making, of course. This is due to research being conducted on finding new treatments by some very smart scientists and researchers. Lung cancer is significantly underfunded, so imagine where we would be if the lung cancer researchers received the same amount of funding as a few of the other cancers?

Lung cancer seems to be left behind because many people believe that a lung cancer survivor somehow caused their diagnosis. This is the stigma that lung cancer survivors face from day one. How many times have you been asked, “did you smoke?” or “when did you quit smoking?” We need to take out the emotional side of this and come to a firm understanding that 1) lung cancer can happen to anyone with lungs, and 2) even if there is a history of smoking the patient does not deserve lung cancer. What they do deserve is help and the chance to a fair treatment plan.

It's also about raising awareness

This leads into also raising awareness for lung cancer. I do this by sharing my story, writing blogs, and being a phone buddy for the newly diagnosed. Before I was diagnosed, I had only heard the words “lung cancer” and I had equated it to a very bad disease. It is a very bad disease but now being the one diagnosed with it, I understand just how complex the disease can be. There are many types of lung cancer and many treatments. Each and every lung cancer patient is unique.

Fundraising essentials and tips

The most common way for me to fundraise is to start a Facebook campaign. This is an easy way for the supporter to donate and have the funds go directly to the foundation. Pre-COVID we were able to also participate in fundraisers such as a 5k walk for lung cancer. These are still an option but look a bit different in the post-COVID world.

There are quite a few places that you can donate to help accelerate lung cancer research. I know that often people want to start their own foundations after a diagnosis. I have seen this a few times now since I have been diagnosed. I would love to have my own foundation however, I believe that instead of starting a new foundation that it is best to donate to the foundations that are already pushing the proverbial needle forward. I have a few of my favorite places that I fundraise for but let me know in the comments where you donate!

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