May 2019
Thanks to the generous support of the many individuals and businesses throughout Monterey County, the Breast Cancer Assistance Group of Monterey County (BCAG) continues to make a difference by providing financial assistance to breast cancer patients struggling financially as they undergo treatment and recovery. 
 
Since the beginning of our Fiscal Year (7/1/18) BCAG has provided grants totaling $133,000 to 64 women throughout Monterey County (with more applications arriving weekly). In addition, through our special program with the Food Bank for Monterey County, we have provided 83 months of free food to BCAG applicants. 
 
The BCAG volunteers are continually inspired by the strength of the women we help as they battle the financial hardships of breast cancer.  In honor of Mother's Day and with thanks to our supporters we would like to share some of the stories of these courageous women whose lives have been changed by your generosity. 

Sincerely,
Jane Sullivan
President
Breast Cancer Assistance Group of Monterey County
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Elizabeth was only requesting money for gas to drive to medical appointments when she submitted an application to BCAG.  However, her terrible cough let the BCAG board member she was speaking to know that something wasn’t right.  Elizabeth admitted that she had pneumonia and was homeless, living in her car.  If her health did not improve her scheduled chemotherapy would have to be postponed because of her compromised immune system.  BCAG was able to locate and pay for a motel while she regained her health. BCAG also provided Elizabeth with money for gas and nutritious food.  Within weeks Elizabeth was able to recover from her pneumonia and able to start chemotherapy.  
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Carol  was first diagnosed with breast cancer in 2011 only to have it return in 2016 along with metastasis to her bones. While enduring her second round of chemotherapy she suffered a stroke and became fully disabled. Carol's 21-year old son took on a second job and the sole responsibility of supporting the family. BCAG was able to assist Carol by paying the family's rent for two months and providing healthy food from the Food Bank for Monterey County. Not only was Carol able to put her mind at ease about how the bills would be paid, her son also had a reprieve from total support responsibilities.  We must never forget that cancer affects the entire family and that by helping the patient we are helping their loved ones as well.
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Rebecca is married with two young children. Rebecca received aggressive weekly chemotherapy treatments until February and now faces cancer surgery, radiation, and additional surgery to remove her ovaries and uterus. Due to her compromised immune system, Rebecca had to stop working at a local care facility.   Rebecca’s husband works as a laborer and has reduced his work hours to help care for Rebecca and their children. The financial toxicity breast cancer has caused this family makes daily living a struggle.  BCAG provided assistance to help cover one month of mortgage and in partnership with the Food Bank for Monterey County, several months of food to this deserving family.  Meanwhile, local oncology social workers are getting Rebecca enrolled in other social services and helping set up payment plans. 
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Victoria  is a married mother of two young children living in Salinas. After being diagnosed with breast cancer she underwent a lumpectomy and began a regiment of chemotherapy treatments.  Victoria took a leave of absence from her job to undergo treatment and applied for disability. Meanwhile her husband was advised he was being laid off from his job.  With the sudden loss of two paychecks the family was struggling financially and quickly began going into debt. BCAG provided Victoria with a grant to pay her car insurance, one month of rent, and an additional amount to cover a month of living expenses. This reprieve from financial stress enabled Victoria to continue her breast cancer treatment without worrying about the loss of her home or car. 
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Jenny  experienced pain while nursing her baby and was subsequently diagnosed with breast cancer. With a long road ahead of chemotherapy, surgery, and radiation, Jenny is fortunate to have the help of her mother, brother, and sisters. Nonetheless, as a single mother with a one and four year old, Jenny needed to contribute to rent, food, and gas expenses. BCAG was able to provide her with the assistance she requested so that she could help with living expenses as she underwent treatment.
In honor or memory of a mother, grandmother, daughter, or friend, please consider making a donation to BCAG this Mother's Day
If you or someone you know has been diagnosed with breast cancer and would like to apply for a grant from BCAG , please visit our website for more information and to download a grant application.
Breast Cancer Assistance Group of Monterey County |Phone: 831-649-6365| Fax:866-219-8561   
  Website :http://www.bcagmc.org