Meet Those Whom We Serve
The survivors whom we serve come to us across a wide arc of ages, stations in life, and needs. We are so blessed to go to work for them every day!
Visit this site often, as we will be featuring different individuals Casting for Hope serves on an ongoing basis.
The Casting for Hope team was so excited and blessed to get to know Denise well during the June survivors’ and caregivers’ retreat. Denise is an ovarian cancer survivor whose courage and strength built all of us at the retreat up. Following the retreat she sent the Casting for Hope team this testimonial: “We caught more than fish–we caught your Hope. Words feel inadequate to express my gratitude for you! Any moments that I feel sad, I close my eyes and imagine the warm sun, the sound of the river, your laughter, and your smiles, warm hugs, and yummy food. And especially Taylor’s courage.”
This article originally appeared in The Morganton News Herald on September 26, 2016, written by Tammie Gercken.
“I would call my story, ‘Treasures in Adversity,’”[Donna] said. “There’s so much good that I’ve been through. You really have to trust and believe, and I did. I knew that I was in the very best of care.”
When [Donna] received her diagnosis after the first surgery, she was given counseling by a patient advocate on her condition and treatment options. [Donna’s] patient advocate was the first to mention the organization Casting for Hope.
Donna was taking chemotherapy at the time, and was anxious trying to figure out how she was going to pay for her treatments and her annual property taxes at the same time. She called Casting for Hope and spoke with the organization’s executive director, Kathy Haney.
“I reached out to Kathy, having little understanding of what they actually did, but I was asking for hope and help, and I got both,” [she] said. “They were so understanding and encouraging. These people are treasures.”
Neil said she submitted an application to Casting for Hope, and received a visit from Haney at the hospital during one of her treatments. Haney gave her a care package that included some tea and snacks, and a handmade pillowcase from the Just In Case ministry at First Baptist Church of Morganton.
“She was like a ray of sunshine,” [Donna] said. “She was such a hopeful, positive source, and she and I just connected. And she just asked, ‘What do you need?’”
[Donna] encouraged any woman who has been diagnosed with cancer to seek help and support from others.
“You cannot depend on yourself to see you through all of this,” [she] said. “You really have to lean on your points of strength. My strength is my faith, my family, friends, physicians and treasures I’ve found, like Casting for Hope.”
She specifically recommended the Biblical scripture Psalm 71, verses 5-9 as a source of inspiration. The passage reads in part, “For you are my hope, O Lord God. You are my trust from my youth.”
“There’s hope out there – You just have to ask. If you keep hope as your focus, then you find it. You find it in people who are fighting just as hard as you are, and in people who have lost loved ones. They’re in it hook, line and sinker to help women who are having to battle. I feel like I have life-long friends in these people.”
Julie is one of Casting for Hope’s lovely and inspirational survivors.
Julie has taken a strong and thorough approach to surviving with cancer through a nutrition as medicine approach, and she feels as though she is being healed through her attention to nutritional choices. In a world that says “cut” and “take this medicine,” Julie is a strong testament to the value of understanding that nutrition is the missing ingredient in almost all medical processes. Julie has adopted a largely plant based, all organic diet that promotes cell regeneration and cell health, instead of the cell death that comes along with the highly processed diets that too often characterizes the Western food intake.
Casting for Hope is inspired by her courage to walk a different path!
Julie is a writer and publisher who has published articles regarding the first Casting for Hope retreat.