Komen Northeast Ohio Invests Nearly $350,000 in 5 Community Programs

Komen Northeast Ohio Invests Nearly $350,000 in 5 Community Programs

CLEVELAND, OH –  Most people recognize the Komen name from the Race for the Cure and other popular fundraising events. What many people do not know is that the bulk of the money raised by these events goes to support local organizations and programs targeted to improving breast health outcomes in our region. This year, Susan G. Komen Northeast Ohio® is contributing nearly $350,000 to five local organizations and hospitals for projects supporting the Komen promise to save lives and end breast cancer forever. Agencies serving the entire Northeast Ohio area were chosen for their evidence-based methods and strategies, with a specific focus on filling gaps in the continuum of care for the underinsured, uninsured, and low-income individuals.

These community grants open the door to health care for thousands of medically underserved women and men across Komen Northeast Ohio’s 22-county service area. Northeast Ohio residents will not only gain access to life-saving breast cancer screening and diagnostic services, they will also receive survivor support services, like assistance with mortgage payments for individuals in active treatment. Sean Shacklett, Executive Director of Komen Northeast Ohio, says, “We are very excited to partner with our grantees to ensure everyone, regardless of age, race, income, or education level, has access to the vital breast health services they need to beat this disease.” In 2016, more than 6,500 individuals will be touched by a Komen Northeast Ohio grant.

Komen Northeast Ohio is the local expert when it comes to understanding breast cancer’s impact on our region thanks to Komen Northeast Ohio’s Community Profile Report. The Community Profile is a community-based needs assessment conducted every four years, most recently in 2015, which examines the barriers to services and gaps in care in Northeast Ohio. This comprehensive assessment allows Komen Northeast Ohio to evaluate areas where people most at-risk live and where services are most needed. Additionally, the report includes information on effective ways to address the identified issues and close the gaps in care as recommended by the people who live in these areas. All of Komen Northeast Ohio’s community grant recipients specifically assist the identified populations and areas of need using effective techniques outlined in the Community Profile.

Barb Steitz, Program Director for Trinity Health Systems Breast & Cervical Cancer Project, acknowledges that funding from Komen greatly impacts their ability to serve those most in need. “Trinity Breast and Cervical Cancer Grant Program in Steubenville is extremely grateful for the continuous collaboration with Komen over the past 16 years. The partnership between Komen and Region 9 of the Ohio Breast and Cervical Cancer Project (BCCP) has expanded the services that BCCP provides to reach more medically underserved, uninsured/underinsured women and men in the community. Not only has Komen provided funding for clinical breast exams, mammograms, and diagnostic services, the program has also given Trinity BCCP the tools and guidance needed to eliminate the barriers that prevent women from having their regular screening and diagnostic exams. Together we can make a difference!” Komen Northeast Ohio provides funding to Trinity to support screening, diagnostic, and treatment services for low-income, uninsured/underinsured individuals that are not covered by Ohio’s BCCP. The funding provided by Komen Northeast Ohio directly assists patients in obtaining the services they need to survive.

Christine Polisena, President of Komen Northeast Ohio, says the organization is committed to making a substantial impact in the community. “Komen Northeast Ohio firmly believes in the power of one. One person, one action can affect one life and impact a whole community. I hope each of our supporters knows that every dollar they raise for the Race for the Cure goes on to help people who would otherwise forego care were it not for the funds they raised. Komen Northeast Ohio dollars go on to save lives right in our own backyard.”

Fundraising activities throughout the year enable Komen Northeast Ohio to fulfill grant requests. In 2015, the Komen Northeast Ohio Race for the Cure® series included over 5,000 participants and raised nearly $650,000.

Information about the 2016-2017 grantees follows. More information for the grant recipients can be found here.