What is the purpose of your organization/club? Cancer Navigators is a community-based nonprofit organization established in 2006 to serve as a complement to the medical expertise of cancer care providers by guiding those affected by cancer toward a better understanding of diagnosis and care while connecting them with needed resources in their journey, all free of charge. CN assesses the needs of a patient’s mind, body and spirit and a personalized plan is created using a dedicated patient navigator.
How is your organization funded? Cancer Navigators’ Complementary Patient Care Program is funded by donations from citizens and businesses, grants from private and public organizations and through fundraising events. Cancer Navigators is a subsidiary of Floyd Healthcare Management Inc. All donations for Cancer Navigators directly support CN patient services.
How did you obtain this position, and why did you pursue this position? I was hired as the fundraising and community outreach coordinator in July 2018. I pursued the position because I believe in the mission of Cancer Navigators and wanted the opportunity to play a role in assisting local cancer patients.
What do you enjoy most acting as a part of this organization? I enjoy the interaction with patients, supporters, the medical community and other nonprofit organizations.
What is your organization’s biggest challenge? Supply vs. demand. Surveys show that approximately 40 percent of Northwest Georgia cancer patients suffer financial toxicity due to the high costs of treatment. Lack of food, transportation, insurance and access to medications create significant issues. The demand for transportation and nutrition assistance currently exceeds our supply, so I am working to raise funds to meet the needs of all qualifying patients. In 2018, CN served over 1,600 cancer patients with a services provided monetary value of over $2 million.
If the organization uses volunteers: Cancer Navigators has a variety of volunteer opportunities. Volunteers are needed for our annual Cast Off event and to set up our annual wreath auction. We also welcome volunteers to assist in the office. From answering the phones, to organizing our wigs, hats, nutrition and medical supplies, we are grateful for any amount of time volunteers are willing to give. Helping spread the word about Cancer Navigators is also much appreciated!
Is there something else you would like to say to our readers? Cancer is not just an illness but impacts the entire life of the patient and their loved ones and takes a toll physically, financially and emotionally. Cancer Navigators offers social support services, counseling, nutrition and transportation assistance, complementary care, support groups and a personalized plan for cancer prevention after treatment, all free of charge. We are here to make certain no one journeys through cancer alone.
Name of nonprofit: Cancer Navigators Inc.
Director: Sarah Husser, Fundraising & Community Outreach Coordinator
Location: 255 W. Fifth St., suite 300 (Third floor, Harbin Clinic Cancer Center)
How long organization in Rome/Floyd (if known): 13 years (established in 2006)
Hours: Mon.–Fri., 9 a.m.–5 p.m.