When I was diagnosed with lymphoma, I was beyond worried about the financial support I would need to go through treatment. I did not know much about cancer and the treatment process back then, but the one thing I knew is that it was likely to be very expensive.
As a 21-year-old daughter of a single mother, I was never financially stable. Initially, I was very timid about making a GoFundMe page to crowdsource funds through treatment. After lots of contemplating, I decided to make a GoFundMe account, and it turned out to be wildly successful. The amount of support I received from my family, friends, and strangers was overwhelming. I also found other financial support through some other organizations that I’d love to share with you in case you are in the same boat I was in.
1. Leukemia and Lymphoma Society (LLS)
I’ll never forget the day of my bone marrow biopsy. My doctor brought up the LLS Co-Pay Assistance program. Through this program, LLS gives you a maximum amount that they will be able to cover for you. The co-pays from your treatments and insurance premiums qualify for the assistance program. You just have to provide receipts and LLS will reimburse you for up to the allocated amount they decided on when you applied for assistance. This helped me so much because I was not able to work, so just having the monthly bill for my insurance covered was such a wonderful relief.
2. American Cancer Society (ACS)
ACS helped me personally by providing me with two real hair wigs. It’s not just the treatments themselves that break the bank. Self-care, prescriptions, and many more factors can burn quite a hole in your wallet. Luckily, ACS was there for me when I wanted a wig, as my hair was progressively falling out by the day. ACS also has a program called “Look Good, Feel Better” that helped me mentally and provided me with a lot of free makeup so that on days where I felt good enough, I was able to make myself look good so I could feel better.
3. Cuck Fancer (CF)
CF was introduced to me by a friend, and I am forever grateful for my first call with the founder, Ben Teller. Teller is a three-time cancer survivor. Ben was very supportive of me throughout treatment, and when I was ready to move back to Los Angeles after treatment, I applied for Cuck Fancer’s grant. To my complete surprise, Cuck Fancer awarded me with one of their grants for the year 2016. Without CF I’m not sure how I would have gotten my feet back on the ground after treatment, and I am so incredibly grateful for that.
These three organizations played a significant role in easing my money stress and being able to focus on my own physical and mental healing, which is so important! I highly recommend looking up local and national organizations. My biggest piece of advice is not to be afraid or feel weird about asking for money. Asking for help can be an extremely vulnerable experience, but lift up your head and be honest about what you need — someone is always listening, and someone can always help you!
Note: Lymphoma News Today is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website. The opinions expressed in this column are not those of Lymphoma News Today or its parent company, BioNews Services, and are intended to spark discussion about issues pertaining to lymphoma.