I want to make you all aware of a project called Esperanza Renovada (Spanish for "Renewed Hope"). Esperanza Renovada is a non-profit project designed to support cancer patients, created by a Follicular Lymphoma patient named Kathy and her husband and caregiver Dennis.
After Kathy was diagnosed with Follicular Lymphoma, she went through a clinical trial for Rituxan, and did great. As we all know, FL is as much an emotional disease as a physical one, and at the end of her treatment, Kathy and Dennis went to Puerto Rico for some relaxation. That trip worked on her emotional healing as well as the Rituxan worked on her physical healing.
Eventually, Kathy and Dennis bought some land in Puerto Rico and built a cabin, and then decided to share that emotional healing with other cancer patients.
And that's what Esperanza Renovada is all about. Their cabin is currently rentable, and they are working on building a lodge with more cabins. The money that comes in from the cabin rentals will go toward funding lodging for cancer survivors, who will be able to stay at Esperanza Renovada for free. As the web site puts it, "This is a time when many survivors need a place outside of a clinical
environment to get away and discover their new life's focus and
reconnect with family members."
If you want to learn more about Esperanza Renovada, you can visit the website at the link above. You can also hear Kathy and Dennis talk about the project on The Morning Show, a radio show on WRCO in Wisconsin. Click here, and scroll down to "Restorative Escape."
Kathy and Dennis are still looking for donations, and you can support them directly from their website. You can also support them by renting their cabin, if you are planning a trip to Puerto Rico. You can find out more about that on the website, too.
I have written a lot about how important an online support group was for me, especially in the early days of my diagnosis. I learned a lot about Follicular Lymphoma, and I got a lot of hope from some special people -- strangers who I had never met in person, but who showed a lot of caring for me. Kathy was one of those special people. I haven't talked to her about Esperanza Renovada, but I know how much it means to her to be able to help other cancer patients, since I was one that she helped.
You look like you need a vacation. Maybe Puerto Rico......?