Monday, March 22, 2010

Support the American Cancer Society in Your Community

We help cancer patients get well and stay well in Alabama.
Through our various support groups and programs, we reach dozens of families in your community. More than 1280 patients received help getting to their treatments.
  • 1219 patients received free wigs, prostheses or other gift items this year.
  • 922 women took part in the Reach to Recovery program, which matches newly diagnosed breast cancer patients with survivors.
  • 857 women went through Look Good...Feel Better, a makeover session for female cancer patients to teach them how to deal with skin and hair changes.
  • 327 men attended Man To Man meetings, a support group for prostate cancer survivors.
  • 447 families from across Alabama stayed for free at the American Cancer Society’s Hope Lodge in Birmingham while seeking treatment at facilities there, for 9710 nights total. That service saved these families an estimated total of $1,165,200!

  • We help find cures right here in Alabama.
    The American Cancer Society funds 8 researchers at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, for a total of more than 4 million dollars in research grants. The American Cancer Society has funded three billion dollars in research since 1946, helping fund such cancer discoveries as the breast cancer drug tamoxifen, surgeries like the bone marrow transplant, and cancer screenings like the PSA test.

    We help cancer patients fight back.
    Volunteers from across Alabama rallied with the American Cancer Society to support a comprehensive statewide smoke-free law. Volunteers from the American Cancer Society attended a Breast Cancer Lobby Day, which helped bring attention to a funding crisis for the Alabama Breast and Cervical Cancer Early Detection Program. That program gives free mammograms to women who can’t afford them. Eventually $400,000 was restored to the budget for these services.

    A new law extending the ABCCEDP was passed, thanks to the support of the American Cancer Society.

    For cancer information 24 hours a day, call 1-800-227-2345 or visit

    Friday, March 19, 2010

    Why participate in Run for the Reason? - Kevin

    This is my second year running for the reason. My desire to participate in this event started out simply as a challenge to myself. A goal to train and finish this relay. Due to injury I wasn't able to train like I wanted to last year, but I raised my money and I was going to participate whether I was 100% or not. So I ran and I finished with the help and support of my team, Team B (The Best Team). After spending close to 3 days with my team, it became clear to me that this run was more than just a running challenge or goal to me. It was a way that I could truly show my support for such a great organization as The American Cancer Society.

    My grandmother Pauline Dooley has battled with and defeated cancer. Although she lives in Canada, the Run for the Reason will allow me to help raise money for cancer research in general and hopefully one day find a cure for this horrible disease. A good friend and even better human being, Mr. Franklin Carroll of Ozark, AL was recently diagnosed with cancer. He has been in Birmingham for treatment for several months now and his parents travel back and forth from Ozark to spend time with him so that he is never alone. His spirit and positive attitude during this trying time is definitely a driving force that will assist me during my run. I will be running in honor of both my grandmother and Franklin this year.

    The Run for the Reason is obviously a great cause. But the biggest thing I enjoy about it, is that it brings together so many people with a common interest (running) and also the desire to help fight cancer. My team my first year was such a joy to run with and I am looking forward to running with them again this year. Everyone that participates in this run, whether it be as a runner, driver or any other form of volunteering shares the same passion (wanting to help fight cancer) and that passion goes a long way when one is striving to raise funds. It helps keep them focused on what they are working for and towards. There's no better reason to run than to Run for the Reason.


    Promising Research

    American Cancer Society researchers are making tomorrow’s breakthroughs in the fight against cancer. Dr. Warner Huh, gynecologic cancer surgeon at UAB and one of seven researchers funded by the American Cancer Society in Alabama, is working on a new Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) vaccine. HPV, a very common virus, is the leading cause of almost all cervical cancer cases. In the United States, over 6 million people get an HPV infection every year. Currently, two vaccines available to the public, Gardasil and Cervarix, protect against four types of HPV (6, 11, 16 & 18), Huh’s vaccine would cover all forms.
    “This vaccine has the potential to protect against ALL HPV types that cause cervical cancer. The implications are considerable,” said Huh. “If the vaccine does demonstrate this level of efficacy over an extended period of time, one could argue that Pap screening is no longer necessary.”

    Last year, 4,070 deaths occurred due to cervical cancer. However, mortality rates have declined steadily over the past several decades due to prevention and early detection as a result of screening. Huh says this disease is the one cancer in women that can be dramatically impacted by the HPV vaccine and consistent screening. In countries where women cannot get routine Pat tests, death from cervical cancer is much more common. In fact, cervical cancer is the major cause of cancer deaths in women in many developing countries. This is where Huh says the vaccine will have the greatest impact…in developing nations.

    In Alabama, the American Cancer Society is funding more than $4 million dollars in grants to researchers at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. Huh, who says he’s always had an interest in prevention strategies, thanks the organization for helping him complete the work on his vaccine. “The grant allows me to clinically test our vaccine product and hopefully bring it to the public in an expeditious manner,” said Huh. “We plan on initiating a Phase I trial at UAB this year.”

    “Without these funds (American Cancer Society), it is nearly impossible for many researchers to further advance their discoveries and in the end, positively impact and improve the lives of cancer patients,” said Huh.
    Huh’s amazing research won him the American Cancer Society’s Life Inspiration Award in 2009. He credits the organization’s dedication to cutting edge research, education, and awareness to making a real difference in the fight against cancer. “No other group has such a palpable impact in this fight.”

    For more information on the American Cancer Society’s research program, call 1.800.227.2345 or visit

    Tuesday, March 9, 2010

    Why participate in Run for the Reason? - Kevin

    Why am I involved in the Run for the Reason? Cancer took my best friend's mom when I was in grade school. Next, it took my grandmother when I was in college. Most recently, cancer took a coworker at Alabama Power. Other family members and friends have battled through cancer and come out on top after difficult struggles. Witness just one of these struggles and all of a sudden raising a few dollars and running a few miles seems incredibly easy.

    Helping to organize the Run for the Reason is a tangible way for me to impact cancer. The money raised through our event not only helps to find the scientific end cancer but it also provides comfort to the people fighting right now. The American Cancer Society's work touches all cancer patients. They support research to end cancer and research to make cancer less painful. They provide support groups for cancer survivors, temporary lodging during treatment, and much more. I'm proud to help the ACS.

    Cancer certainly isn't going to be defeated by one person. I'm happy to be a part of the very large team working toward a common goal.


    Monday, March 8, 2010

    From driver to runner!! Yea baby!!!!

    So, I am running the relay this year. That's right....I AM RUNNING!!!!!! The past two years I have been a driver and support person for the event. I've always wanted to run it, but never had the commitment for the training. Well, this year I'm gonna do it!!!! I'm blogging all about my training so be sure and check back here to see my updates. I'm running the SEEDS 5k event this weekend in Daphne and will post my time (unless it's really embarrasing) sometime.......


    Saturday, March 6, 2010

    Why participate in Run for the Reason? - Greg

    Why do I do this? It's a two part answer.

    The first being my mother-in-law found out about 3 years ago she had colon cancer. At first, she had been diagnosed with Crohn's Disease and was being treated for it. Over time, her symptoms would get better and then worsen. Several months later it had gotten to the point that it was just so unbearable, something else had to be done for her. My wife and sister-in-law insisted she seek another opinion. So they made her an appointment to see an oncologist. After running some tests, he gave us the news, she had colon cancer.

    He recommended surgery to remove the mass he found. After the surgery was over, he came to see the family and informed us that he unfortunately had to remove 2 to 3 feet of her colon. That was the good news. The bad news was that he also found 2 spots of cancer on her liver. He asked her to see if she was candidate for a new type surgery called "cyber knife surgery", but she was not. She has been on medication for 2 years since which has helped to get rid of the smaller cancer spot. The larger spot seems to be somewhat tougher. It has grown to about the size of a dime. She is a very sweet person and a devout Christian. Most of the time, She is very cheerful and there is no doubt she is well liked by all who meet her. "Gran" as she is called by all the grandkids and great grandkids, is truly a blessing to us all. As she will tell you, it’s by the Grace of God and by His Hand she is still here today.

    As for the other reason, my brother's wife who just a little over a year ago turned 36, she on a routine checkup found out she had breast cancer. They have six kids, ranging from 3 to 23. Their oldest is in graduate school with my youngest son at Troy University. The diagnosis was a very devastating for all of us, because the 5 other children are so young.

    She went through the whole gamut of chemo and radiation, and subsequently, she was a very sick young lady for several months. She had to have surgery and reconstructive surgery, and if it wasn't for being in such a loving church, I really don't know how we all would have made it through this. The whole church really went above and beyond what they need to do. Kim has now recovered very well and is doing great.

    You never know when or who cancer will attack next. I was very young and have little memory of my grandfather Deavers, but my Dad told me he died from lung cancer. It seems that every time we are at church someone else has gotten this awful disease. We really need to find a cure, and that's why I do all I can to help. It's well worth the effort.


    Friday, March 5, 2010

    Why participate in Run for the Reason? - Lee

    A few years ago I was approached to see if I would be willing to run with the Alabama Power Run for the Reason team. APC was recruiting “runners’, and I guess I fit the bill in that I have run some marathons and half-marathon (although don’t ask me for my times J). I had run a few of those for the Multiple Sclerosis society in honor of my mother-in-law so running for a cause always makes it better.

    Even though I work in Atlanta, I was born and raised in LA (that’s lower Alabama for you non-natives); so I had a connection with my Alabama co-workers. Ironically after agreeing in December of 2007 to run, my mother was diagnosed with cancer in February of 2008. So that year’s run became even more important as cancer had hit very close to home. I truly had a “reason”; to run now.

    This will be my third RFTR and I am even more excited. Each year brings many fun and challenging stories. The first year’s Waffle King experience in Selma Alabama has to still top the story list for me. I think you had to be there at 4:00 am. on a Sunday morning to appreciate it J.

    The experience is always worth it and so worth the effort to raise money to help win the fight against cancer. Since joining the RFTR I have investigated more into the American Cancer Society and the work they perform and have been more and more impressed with the organization and what they do. They are truly helping to save lives.

    That’s it for now. Back onto some training. I need to get ready for tomorrow morning’s long run…