Pat Croce's American Cancer Society Healed Gathering welcomes a Philadelphia favorite: singer Lauren Hart.
Lauren is a longtime family friend of Pat's, is a singer, songwriter, and a non-Hodgkin Lymphoma survivor. She is best known in the Philly area as the singer of the National Anthem prior to Philadelphia Flyers games.
"When you're young, you don't think this could happen to you." There is an amazing connection between mind and body. Lauren spoke of the sadness she felt at her father's death, and chalked her feelings of unwell up to that. After the pain became unbearable, she went to the ER and was diagnosed with cancer. During her six months of chemo, she found hope and inspiration from the people who reached out to her and shared their journey, and words of encouragement. She shared that hearing their stories, knowing there was a path she could take to help her through, finding a connection with others facing a cancer journey - that all helped her through and she now pays it forward by sharing her story to provide hope and encouragement.
After Lauren, we met Paul Isenberg, founder and CEO of Bringing Hope Home. Bringing Hope Home is a non-profit organization that provides Unexpected Amazingness to local families with cancer through financial and emotional support. Through their Light of Hope Family Grant, they offer a one-time grant to pay essential household bills for families with cancer. Paul was inspired to launch this organization after watching his wife battle cancer. They were lucky to have the support of family and friends, good jobs, and good health benefits. But they met so many people during her journey who didn't have anything, who struggled to pay rent, or put food on the table. The organization has helped more than 7,000 families since the launch, all in an effort to ensure those facing cancer aren't facing it alone.
It was an amazing gathering today, plenty of hope and inspiration!