Dear family and friends,
As some of you may know one of my lifelong dreams has been to run the Boston Marathon. After the Marathon Bombings in 2013, I have an even stronger motivation to be Boston Strong and cross that finish line than I have ever before. I have been provided the opportunity to run the marathon this April with Team BIDMC! I became a member of the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center community in December 2013 after accepting a nursing position in the postpartum unit. Immediately after starting, I fell in love with BIDMC and feel honored to work alongside such an amazing healthcare team in order to provide the highest level of care for our patients.
I decided I wanted to become a nurse after my good friend, Alison, was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia while we were in high school. Alison was one of the bravest and most courageous people that I have ever had the pleasure of knowing. Even after three rounds of chemotherapy, Alison never stopped smiling or trying to bring joy into other people’s lives. She would knit hats and baby booties for the premature infants in the NICU. She became a mentor and friend for other young children battling cancer and was always putting herself before others even when she wasn’t feeling her best or in pain. Alison sadly lost her battle with leukemia in 2007. Since then, her family and friends have tried to keep her courageous spirit alive by continuing her fight to raise awareness for cancer. I have run two half-marathons in her honor, and would love to run the Boston Marathon in her memory.
I am both really excited and nervous to run 26.2 miles and am honored to complete this challenge with fellow team members who love BIDMC as much as I do. I am raising money for Bowdoin Street’s Healthy Champion Program. While working on the maternity floors, I often take care of patients who receive healthcare at Bowdoin Street and I have seen firsthand how this health center has impacted their life in such a positive way. You can scroll down and read more about the program at the bottom of the page!
Thank you so much for considering donating toward my $7,500 goal. It means the world to me to have your support!
Team BIDMC is running to support Kidney Disease Research, Bowdoin Street Health Center, The Cancer Center, and the Annual Fund. Several of our runners are also supporing our Needham and Milton affiliates. Thank you for your support!
Bowdoin Street’s Healthy Champions Program
Healthy Champions is an anti-obesity education, fitness and community-building program serving primarily low-income children ages 7-14 with BMI ≥ 85%-95% from the surrounding Bowdoin/Geneva neighborhood. Under supervision of a case manager/fitness coach and our nutritionist, the Healthy Champions learn about the importance of nutrition and healthy foods, food preparation/food access in their neighborhood, and fitness and healthy lifestyles. They plan, implement and sustain their own plot in the local community garden each year, in turn learning important marketing lessons by selling their produce at the Bowdoin/Geneva Farmers’ Market (held on-site at Bowdoin Street Health Center) each week during the growing season. Perhaps most importantly, Healthy Champions serve as “ambassadors of health” to their families and peers in the community, sharing their knowledge about health and wellness while developing a sense of confidence in their ability to effect healthy changes in themselves and in the wider community.
Kidney Disease Research
The Renal Division Research Team has identified a reason for the high rate of kidney disease in people of African descent. Kidney disease is five times more likely to affect African Americans than other groups of people, and the team is actively working to alleviate this epidemic. This is a major public health problem and this research, which may lead to major advances in treatment, is unique to BIDMC. Dialysis is not a cure. Fewer than 40 percent of dialysis patients live more than five years. Rates of kidney failure are increasing and the cost to treat those patients continues to rise each year. In 2009, $42.5 billion was spent to provide care to those with kidney failure. Over the next three to five years, the Renal Division Research Team aims to use their findings to better understand, prevent, and treat kidney disease in African Americans. They plan to develop a multifaceted approach to solving this problem that will be highly visible and have a large impact on the lives of individuals and their families.
BIDMC depends on the Annual Fund to fulfill its mission of providing compassionate patient care.
This fund raises unrestricted dollars that can be used immediately for a wide range of needs. They provide a reliable, steady source of funding for the programs that need it most:
- Promising research projects, such as cancer genetics investigations
- Annual operating costs, such as funding for social worker positions
- Career development opportunities for staff, such as continuing education scholarships for nurses
- Expansion of clinical spaces, like minimally invasive surgery suites
- Academic and teaching programs, such as fellowships for the next generation of physicians in growing service lines
The Cancer Center Fund
You can read more about the BIDMC Cancer Center here.