We just observed Veterans Day across the United States, but for the Charlotte-based team at Veterans Bridge Home, the work continues every day—and it's the best kind of work they could ask for.
Veterans Bridge Home is on a mission to build stronger communities, one Veteran at a time. And in a city with more than 150,000 Veterans, the nonprofit has plenty to do. Through a network of partners, the organization helps Veterans navigate employment, create social connections, and settle their families.
But it's not just Veterans who benefit—the entire Charlotte community gets better when Veterans make a successful transition from military to civilian life. Just ask Nick Maglosky, CEO of Charlotte-based ecommerce software provider Ecomdash.
Bailey has overcome more in 11 years than most people face in a lifetime. Born prematurely at 28 weeks, Bailey spent the first two years of her life in the neonatal intensive care unit. Her left arm was amputated when she was 26 days old. She lives with autism and is non-verbal.
Now in her first year of middle school, Bailey and her mom, a U.S. Navy Veteran, have persevered to overcome some serious challenges. Needless to say, a family vacation wasn't in the cards for this family.
No one thinks they’ll need Carolina Breast Friends. Cancer is not something we often wait for or anticipate with a list of resources. Even if there’s a family history, any diagnosis,can feel like a gut punch out of nowhere, and many may frantically Google for lifelines. Thus, Carolina Breast Friends wants to let people know beforehand that they are located right near both major healthcare centers at The Pink House at 1607 East Morehead Street.
If you've ever taken a Level Up workshop at Bold Missy, struck a warrior pose in the Triple C barrel room, or crushed in trivia at 26 Acres, you know that when it comes to the Charlotte craft beer scene, community is everything.
When Janiah's doctor recommended physical therapy utilizing horses, her father thought it would be a fun activity that might also help loosen up her hips. Cerebral palsy made it tough for Janiah to walk by herself, and her dad, Todd, carried her most of the time, even though she was six.
This is not a question we tend to ask ourselves in our thirties. Jen Pagani didn't have a choice. Shortly after having her second son, Jen was diagnosed with inflammatory breast cancer—an aggressive form of the disease that she fought with the same tenacity she'd brought to two Ironman Triathlons. Her fighting spirit gave her more than six years to spend with her two boys and her soulmate and husband Joe. It also gave us the Go Jen Go Foundation.
Far too often, there is more than one battle that comes with a cancer diagnosis. It is not just the cancer that a patient is up against, it’s everything that comes along with it. Yes, there is the obvious physical and emotional toll, but it’s also the financial curveball that cancer throws patients and their families as well.
Take breast cancer survivor Tammy Greene, for example. Tammy grew concerned about her health after discovering a lump on her breast. She knew she needed to get the lump checked out, but in addition to her fear of a diagnosis was a fear of how to pay for a mammogram, let alone a battle with cancer.
"Someone is going to do something for the babies."
That's how Sonja Chisholm reassured a mom in her Gracious Hands transitional housing program who was worried that her kids would have a Christmas with no presents under the tree.
Gracious Hands provides temporary shelter while educating, encouraging and empowering women with children to attain a brighter future economically, socially and spiritually. Up to five women and their children are able to live in the comfortable home provided by "Miss Sonja," so they can get back on their feet and find self-sufficiency.
Amanda Ruiz knows there's no "perfect time" to start going after your dreams. All she wanted was a college degree, but life kept throwing obstacles in her path. Her father suffered permanent brain damage after being assaulted, and her mother was diagnosed with a brain tumor that same year. Meanwhile, Amanda was dealing with her own health issues on top of it all.
At age 18, she was diagnosed with Crohn's disease—an illness with no cure and potentially life-threatening complications. All of these health problems wiped out the family's savings and forced Amanda to drop out of East Carolina University. "We lost our house, boat, cars and any security I ever felt," says Amanda.
In honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, all October long we are highlighting our nonprofit partners who work to provide resources to those affected by breast cancer as part of our monthly Spotlight Series.
Did you know? 1 in 8 women in the United States will develop breast cancer in their lifetime. This makes breast cancer the second most common cancer among women, coming in close behind skin cancer. To put it in perspective, on average, every two minutes another woman is diagnosed, every two minutes someone’s world is completely rocked.
We have so much great news to share from our nonprofit partners about their amazing work. But, we'd love to hear from you. Let us know if you have stories you'd like to tell and we'll make you a guest blogger!!