Friday, September 18, 2020

What ACS Means to Me & What It Could Mean to You

 

 

ACS CARES
Nikkie Sardelli
Staff Partner, ACS Marco Island

Even before I became an American Cancer Society (ACS) staff partner, I was well aware of the nonprofit organization and its mission to fight cancer. However, what I did not know until I joined the wonderful staff and dedicated volunteers, was just how much ACS provides for those diagnosed with cancer that goes far beyond funding research. Most importantly, the services ACS provides are either free, or at significantly reduced rates.

I chose to work for the American Cancer Society because I wanted my passion for coordinating events to go towards an amazing cause. Knowing that the events I assist in planning help others who are battling such a cruel disease drives me to keep going until we finish this fight for good.

Being able to get to know our local volunteers, and hearing their stories of what made them join the fight, is truly inspirational. I personally have lost three grandparents to this disease, one being quite young when she lost her battle. Cancer hits close to home for most of us. Working for ACS is fulfilling, especially because ACS contributes to those living right in our own community.

It is remarkable to know that ACS has been helping to fight this battle for 100 years now. Although vast progress has been made, there is still a long way to go. By joining such a committed organization, I feel I am doing my part in preventing this disease from going uncured for another 100 years.

As a staff partner, I want to share with you the importance of our volunteers, and how much they mean to us. We are always looking for volunteers who want to become a part of our mission. Whether a volunteer wants to play a large or small role, any degree of involvement is much appreciated. ACS is “volunteer-led, staff-run,” meaning that we want our volunteers to take the lead, and we want to help support them in their efforts to fund our mission. It is up to those in our community to keep the drive of ACS going. It is because of those volunteers, who are so passionate about the ACS mission, that we are able to support our Marco Island community.

At the Marco Island ACS office, located at 583 Tallwood Street, Suite 101, we provide free wigs/wig fittings, informational pamphlets, and loaned books for patients and caregivers. There is also our Road to Recovery program, where volunteers drive patients, who do not have alternative transportation, to doctor appointments and treatments, free of charge. To reach our office and speak with a member of the staff who may assist you, please call 239-642-8800. Additionally, our neighboring Naples office location offers our Look Good Feel Better program, where makeup and hairstylists come and pamper women for an afternoon.

On a larger scale, by calling 1-800-227-2345, you may be transferred to a representative that specializes in your particular type of cancer, where they can offer day-to-day help or even emotional support 24/7. If you are struggling with your diagnosis or just need someone’s support, you can call this helpline even late at night, and there will always be someone there for you to talk to. The resources they can provide patients are vast, and most are undisclosed to staff. This number provides a secure place to speak about private information that never gets released to local offices, or anywhere else. This is why it is so important to call the hotline and be able to speak with a specialist who can offer you aid in any aspect of your difficult journey through cancer diagnosis and treatment.

The American Cancer Society of Marco Island is here to help provide our community with resources to fight back against cancer, and create a world with more birthdays. To help support our mission and the wonderful resources we provide to our local community, you may be interested in one of our two major fundraising events: the Imagination Ball, a black-tie optional affair, held at the Marco Island Marriott on March 5, 2016 (www.acsimaginationball.com); or Relay For Life, a family-oriented event, held at Mackle Park on April 9, 2016 (www. relay.acsevents.org). For any information on either of these events please contact Nikkie Sardelli, Coordinator Division Office & Event Support, at 239-642-8800 ext. 3894.

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