Funds Provide Food, Lodging and Transportation
COLUMBUS, OHIO – Feb. 2, 2017 – A local leadership group raised $85,000 in one month to cover food, lodging and basic needs for out-of-town cancer patients undergoing treatment in Columbus.
The month-long fundraising effort is a project of Next Level Gives, a philanthropic arm of Next Level Trainings, which offers leadership and emotional intelligence programs in Central Ohio.
Funds, goods and services raised benefit Hope Hollow, a local 501 (c)(3) nonprofit that gives thousands of dollars annually in gasoline, meal gift cards and overnight stays to cancer patients strained by the costs of treatment. Hope Hollow founders Jane and Kevin Clark provided more than 500 overnight stays between their private home and nearby hotels in 2016. Thanks to the additional funding, Hope Hollow has already granted more than 100 overnight stays in 2017.
On top of providing for patients’ practical needs, Hope Hollow serves as a source of emotional support for those fighting for their lives far from home.
Jenny Turner of Dayton encountered Hope Hollow at the start of her journey with stage-3 breast cancer in 2015. During her first evening with the Clarks, Jenny received disheartening news – her chemotherapy, originally scheduled to begin the next morning, was cancelled due to questionable spots on her liver and pancreas. Distraught and overwhelmed, Jenny turned to Jane.
“Jane literally physically held me,” Jenny recalls. “She’ll never know what that meant to me.”
Jane was there for Jenny during her most terrifying moment and supported her throughout her journey. On January 18, 2017 at the Stefanie Spielman Breast Center, Jenny celebrated her last treatment with her husband, two children and Jane by her side.
“We first come to know our patients and families… then we grow to love them… then they become our family” Jane said.
The $85,000 raised for Hope Hollow consists of $63,400 in financial donations with the remainder split between tangible goods and gift cards. The 40 individuals who worked on the initiative organized ten fundraising events and gave 1,000 volunteer hours to the cause. With the initial fundraising complete, they are making plans to assist Hope Hollow with several long-term projects including landscaping and home improvements.
This marks the seventh community service project organized through Next Level Gives. Combined, the seven projects have contributed nearly $300,000 and 3,000 volunteer hours to Columbus initiatives such as homelessness, human trafficking, drug addiction, veterans and cancer. The eighth community service project will kick off in February 2017.
Local Campaign Raises $60,000 for Cancer Patients in 2 Weeks
COLUMBUS, OHIO – Jan. 17, 2017 – A group of local leaders has raised $60,000 in two weeks to give meals, transportation and overnight stays to cancer patients traveling to Columbus for treatment.
The collections are part of a one-month campaign – The Light of Hope Campaign – to raise $100,000 in funds, goods and services for out-of-town cancer patients and their families by January 19, 2017. The campaign is an initiative of Next Level Gives, a philanthropic arm of Next Level Trainings, an organization that offers leadership and emotional intelligence programs in Central Ohio.
All campaign proceeds benefit Hope Hollow, a local 501 (c)(3) nonprofit that sources thousands of dollars in gasoline, meal gift cards and personal care items for cancer patients and families each year. Miles away from home and financially strained by the costs associated with their cancer treatment, many of these families are unable to afford their basic needs.
“When you’re hungry and you know your kids are hungry and you’re an hour from home and someone reaches out… it really means a lot,” said Dave Dicks, who encountered Hope Hollow when his wife was being treated for breast cancer. “Hope Hollow was a gift from God.”
Hope Hollow also provides hundreds of overnight stays per year both in the private home of founders Jane and Kevin Clark and in nearby hotels. Most uniquely, the Clarks offer a source of emotional support for people who are on one of the most difficult journeys of their life.
“When someone is struggling with cancer I think you just love them and let them know they’re not on that journey alone,” Jane said. “Even though you’re not walking the same walk exactly, you can still walk with them.”
She would know. Jane was introduced to cancer at the age of ten when she lost her mother to pancreatic cancer. Shortly thereafter, her aunt suffered the same fate. In 2007, Jane faced her own battle with medullary thyroid cancer, followed by breast cancer in 2010. Thanks to early detection, Jane is now cancer free.
“At that point, I thought… I just have to find a really concrete way to live the gratitude,” Jane shared.
So in 2008, the Clarks bought a warm and comforting home, which they named Hope Hollow, and began hosting families for short-term stays. From there, Jane describes their story as “a journey of miracles,” as both community members and businesses joined them in supporting their vision to help more cancer patients and their families. In 2014, Hope Hollow received the Excellence in Mission award from the American Cancer Society for making an extraordinary impact on the Society’s mission through health initiatives, advocacy or research.
“We at Next Level Gives are grateful to support this worthy organization and we’re excited to be a channel for the community’s generosity in the coming weeks” said Stephanie Lynn, Next Level Gives Project Captain.
A numbers of smaller fundraisers and discount days are also occurring. A complete list can be found at www.facebook.com/nextlevelgives.
Those who can’t make the events are invited to participate in other ways. The “Light of Hope Challenge” is a viral video portion of the campaign featuring a candle lighting chain to keep the light of hope alive for those touched by cancer. Search #lightofhopechallenge on Facebook for more.
To contribute to Hope Hollow visit www.nextlevelgives.com/vip7 or text “HOPE” to 48421 to receive a link to donate. Learn more about Hope Hollow at www.hopehollow.com.
The Light of Hope Campaign is organized by Next Level Gives, a philanthropic arm of Next Level Trainings. The organization is dedicated to connecting with worthy causes that serve the needs, well-being and happiness of the people of Columbus and beyond. Participants of all ages and backgrounds are current students within the Next Level Training program and are charged with creating a month-long service project that has a lasting tangible impact on the community. There are 40 individuals in the class organizing the Light of Hope Campaign.