April 2015

National Volunteer Month

April is National Volunteer appreciation month! 

Ann's Place wishes to recognize the small army of volunteers whose time, dedication, and willingness to volunteer at Ann's Place continues to astound us year after year! 

"In 2014 Ann’s Place utilized over 1,000 volunteer positions. Whether on a weekly or monthly basis, at an event or fundraiser, or for occasional administrative help, maintenance, and setting up for events, your willingness, compassion, and eagerness to help continue to inspire and amaze me daily." says Lynn Stubbe, Ann's Place Volunteer Coordinator

"I would also like to thank you for making my first year at Ann’s Place such a special one. Your kindness, support, and guidance are greatly appreciated and truly makes me smile."

Ann's Place Receives a $15K Grant from Pink Aid

By Catherine McGrath, Director of Development 

Ann’s Place received a $15,000 grant from Pink Aid that will be used to help support the Financial Aid program for breast cancer clients. For the past 24 years, Ann’s Place has been providing free cancer support services to those touched by cancer, as well as their loved ones, in the Greater Danbury area. In 2014, Ann’s Place served more than 950 clients.

Pink Aid’s mission is to help local under-served women survive breast cancer with support, dignity and compassion, and to empower breast cancer survivors to heal and inspire others.

This is the first grant that Ann’s Place has received from Pink Aid. We see this partnership funding as an interim step toward the integration of its community impact work.

Smarter Eating with Kim and Tim

Smarter Eating with Kim and Tim, a new cooking and nutrition program at Ann’s Place, debuted on March 26th with a great turnout of enthusiastic attendees. Kim created some delicious, healthy and easy recipes while Tim spoke about the how’s and why’s of good nutrition. There was an easy flow to the evening, with participants asking questions and learning more about the science of good eating. Everyone loved the menu items which Kim prepared for all to try. The foods were colorful, tasty and had great nutrients and fiber. Good eating does not have to be boring, or take hours to prepare! Keep your eyes open for future Smarter Eating with Kim and Tim programs!  Future programs will be based upon participant interest!  To request a nutritional topic email su@annsplace.org

Dispatch from the 12th Annual Adult Cancer Conference at Dana Farber Cancer Center in Boston

By Kevin Berrill, MSW, LCSW

Kevin displays the super bowl Ring of NFL champion and cancer survivor Joe Adruzzi at the conference. Joe Andruzzi who earned three Super Bowl rings while playing for the New England Patriots, spoke at the March 28th conference about his diagnosis at age 31 of non-Hodgkins Burkitt’s lymphoma. Since his recovery, Joe and his wife Jennifer have dedicated themselves to helping others dealing with cancer. Today, the Joe Andruzzi Foundation provides financial support to patients and their families in the region, allowing them to focus on treatment and recovery. The Foundation also funds pediatric brain cancer research. “At the conference Joe and his wife Jennifer spoke openly about the emotional and physical challenges of Joe’s illness---including how it affected them as young adults, as spouses, and as parents,” said Kevin. “I am inspired by their teamwork, their story, and their commitment to helping others who cannot make ends meet because of cancer.” Several members of the Ann’s Place Young Adults group attended this year’s conference, which featured workshops on such topics as living well with uncertainty and navigating personal relationships in the midst of treatment.
Photo: Kevin displays the Super Bowl ring of NFL champion and cancer survivor Joe Adruzzi.

Return Path Supports Ann's Place

Return Path, headquartered in NYC, is a global data solutions provider that helps the world’s leading companies promote and protect their brands. Return Path believes the passion and creativity of their employees is intensified when they have an opportunity to make a difference in their communities. With that in mind, Return Path established the DreamFund in 2011, an employee-directed grant program to support local charities and outreach programs.

Each quarter, Return Path provides financial contributions and program assistance to support employees in making a positive impact globally and locally through grassroots initiatives — promoting social responsibility and helping individuals and communities. Return Path employees have completed projects across the globe, from helping the Tennyson Center for Children in the US, to Beanstalk in the United Kingdom.

Jacqueline Leo, Financial Analyst, and Jordan Hunt, Technical Account Manager, were awarded funds through this Dream Fund Program to support Ann’s Place. They chose to support Ann’s Place because they wanted to support the mission of helping their community members through their struggles with cancer. As volunteers, they have seen firsthand the positive impact that Ann’s Place has had on individuals and families who have been affected by cancer in some way. Ann’s Place is a unique organization that they are very proud and excited to support!

"SDRAWKCAB" Night at Ann's Place!

By Laura Donnelly, MWS, LCSW

Lynn & Shannon Stubbe

Lynn & Shannon Stubbe

If you saw people at Ann's Place with clothes on backwards and inside out they were most likely on their way to BACKWARDS Night!  Ann's Place hosted a Family Fun Night on Tuesday March 24 The theme of the evening was BACKWARDS night.  The evening began in backwards fashion with dessert first followed by dinner!  The families engaged in activities such as backwards t-shirt making, unmusical chairs, creating inside out piñatas  and a mad game of Family Feud.  A fun time was had by all but most importantly the families enjoyed spending time with each other and connecting with other families who are impacted by cancer. 

On hand volunteering was Shannon Stubbe, daughter of Ann's Place Volunteer Coordinator Lynn Stubbe.  This was a special evening for mother and daughter; Shannon along with her sister Lyla and father Doug participated in past family evenings during Lynn's own cancer treatment.  It is a special privilege for Shannon to return and to help other families relax and have a fun filled evening!  

New Clinical Program: Quilting for Beginners

Selma Kenter, an experienced quilter, has offered to teach a Quilting Class at Ann’s Place. Selma has been helping with our Festival of Trees and has donated many quilts over the years to Ann’s Place. Her quilts are always the prize submission at our Festival. She is an outstanding quilter, and we are so excited that she will be sharing her knowledge and talents with us! The quilting class will be held at Ann’s Place on Tuesdays, April 14 and 21, at 1:30 p.m. Please call and speak with a clinical staff member to register if you would like to attend the class.