The Bonnie J. Addario Lung Cancer Foundation (ALCF) and the employees at Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals have joined forces to help brighten the holiday season for lung cancer patients through the “Bring Hope Home for the Holidays” program.
The partnership consists of volunteers visiting lung cancer patients’ homes to wrap presents, decorate Christmas trees, sing carols, hang outdoor lights, write holiday cards, and bring help and joy to patients across the U.S. through Dec. 20.
“The holidays are hectic and wonderful moments for most. As a mother of three, I always wanted to make them magical for my family,” Bonnie J. Addario, a lung cancer survivor and founder of the ALCF, said in a press release.
“When I was diagnosed with lung cancer during the holidays, I found it almost impossible to make ‘magic’ for them. It broke my heart,” she said. “This year it is our goal to ease the burden of patients by going to their homes and helping them prepare for the season. We are excited to partner with Boehringer Ingelheim and their amazing employees to help make a little magic for these patients and their families.”
Despite being the leading life-threatening forms of cancer, lung cancer remains underfunded. According to the National Cancer Institute (NCI), lung cancer is still poorly understood because there is a stigma associated with the disease and it receives less funding than any other cancer.
Most people don’t realize that eight out of 10 people with lung cancer have never smoked or quit smoking decades ago. But the stigma persists that a person’s lung cancer was brought on by a lifetime of smoking, leading to consistent underfunding for research. Lung cancer is the most deadly type of cancer of both women and men in the United States, according to the NCI’s Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results (SEER) Program, killing more people than prostate, breast, and colon cancers combined.
“‘Bring Hope Home for the Holidays’ is a unique effort to give back to the lung cancer community and deliver cheer and joy to their homes during this special time of year,” said Jean-Michel Boers, president of Human Pharma at Boehringer Ingelheim. “With the support of caring volunteers from Boehringer Ingelheim, we hope to make a positive difference in their lives and demonstrate the personal connection we feel with these remarkable people.”
Whether families recognize Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, or any other holiday, the winter holiday season should be a time to celebrate loved ones and make resolutions for the new year. “Bring Hope Home for the Holidays” may provide lung cancer patients and families with more free time for what really matters.
“’Bring Hope Home for the Holidays’ is a seasonal reminder that we need to provide loving support to people fighting this leading cancer killer. Our goal is to transform lung cancer into a chronically managed disease and eventually find a cure,” Addario said.
For more information about the program, visit http://www.lungcancerfoundation.org/bringhopehome/