Share the Season is an annual campaign that offers one-time aid to people affected by unforeseen hardships. The people are not identified to protect their privacy.
Diagnosed with breast cancer in July, this woman, 48, is on disability leave at her job, but short-term disability payments have recently ceased. She has undergone intensive chemotherapy since August and doctors estimate it will be another couple months before she can return to work.
“Since my money ran out, I wonder how I’m going to pay the rent and other utility bills,” she said. “I’m not a beggar — I just pray on it.”
A single mother of three school-age girls, she said she uses her fervent faith to inspire herself to continue.
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“Faith is the key,” she said. “You have to have a positive attitude at all times in order to have a positive outcome.”
She has gained respect for cancer patients of all varieties.
“It has made me see life in a different way,” she said. “It’s made me more compassionate. One day I hope to be an advocate for cancer patients.”
She said that her children have been more affected by her situation than she has.
“They were very scared for me because I’m their world,” she said. “I’ve never broken down in front of them, because I think it’s important to show them faith, that there is a God.”
She said she hopes to enjoy the true meaning of Christmas with her children this year.
“We have to remember the reason for the season,” she said. “It’s not about receiving; it’s all about giving.”
She is asking for assistance from Share the Season to help pay her rent and utility bills, to help provide a Christmas for her family.
“I don’t have any money to give them,” she said. “But I can give them myself. It’s going to be a very special Christmas.”
So far, Share the Season has raised $151,512. Donors include Marvin and Connie Angleton, in memory of Emma Phoenix Angleton; Prairie Hyperbaric - Robert Brenner; Jack and Marilyn DeBoer; David and Rebecca Deckard; Terri Dondlinger; Ron Griffin; Michael and Carroll Hadley; Sharon Hamric; John and Michele Hill; Jack and Nyla Hobbs; Scott and Susan Johnson; John and Paula Lamprecht; Kent and Jeanette Lanier; Robert Lee; Geoffrey and Linda Luerding; Andrew Mies; Hal and Nancy Million; Shirley Naill, in memory of Bill Naill; Dean and Rita Pressnall; Janice Tuttle; and 17 anonymous donations, including one in memory of Willie and another in memory of Eric Palmer and Lillian Vermillion.
Send contributions to Share the Season at the Wichita Community Foundation, 301 N. Main, Suite 100, Wichita, KS 67202.
Donations also can be made through PayPal online at www.wichitacf.org. Donors will be listed in The Eagle; please note if you prefer to remain anonymous. For more information, call 316-264-4880.
The deadline to apply for help is Friday. To apply, download an application at www.sharetheseason.org, or pick one up at the Salvation Army, 350 N. Market, Wichita. For more information, call 316-263-2769.