“Ally’s dream was to help others; our pursuit is to make it a reality” Katy Strong
Shining a Light on Young Warriors
The work of the Allyson Whitney Foundation is to continue Ally’s wishes and her aspiration to show that cancer can happen at any moment, to anyone. Our vision is to shine a spotlight on young adults diagnosed with cancer (over 80,000 a year) and their unique genetically different cancers. We want to spread awareness that ‘rare’ is a word used often when faced with a cancer diagnosis as a young adult. We want realization that young adults are in a precarious spot facing cancer with financial toxicity, dropping out of school, job loss and infertility issues. Misdiagnosis & delayed treatment, due to age is prevalent. Cancer is a family disease, affecting everyone in some way. When we started this journey in 2012, we could count on one hand the Adolescent Young Adult organizations available. Lastly, we are honored to join the many other wonderful organizations assisting and moving this momentum for young adults with cancer forward.
HOPE Comfort Bags
Our AWF ambassadors deliver HOPE comfort bags to patients utilizing oncology departments in Sullivan and Orange County, NY (Garnet and Crystal Run), Stanford Infusion Suite in CA, along with an additional delivery to Fort Myers, FL infusion suite.
Patients will receive HOPE Bags filled with essential organic, soothing products to aid in their relief during treatment. These are handpicked from some of our inspiration Ally’s favorites, such as, Orgain protein drink, Biotene mouthwash, Gin Gin candies, tea, Biofreeze, lotions & queasy pops, a crossword puzzle/drawing pad is a must to keep your mind occupied, and Poo Pourri antiseptic wipes and spray. Some items have been requested by oncology nurses: such as a journal, thermometer and pill cases. We include essential oil to calm and meditate, and no bag would be complete without a comfy cozy blanket for treatment.
Due to the efforts of our amazing volunteer committee, many generous in-kind donations were secured from companies to participate in our Hope Bags. We thank Greg Kingsley, a former charity runner and warrior himself, for sending hats along for us to distribute. AWF has established this other initiative to reach even more individuals battling cancer to aid in healing.
Each year, over 80,000 young adults between the ages of 16 and 39 are diagnosed with cancer.
Data from NHI
Evidence suggests young adults get entirely different cancer than other age groups, with unique & biological features.
Data from NHI
Young adults have delayed cancer diagnosis, and survival rates have not improved in over 20 years.
Data from SHEER 2005
Why We Began…
The Allyson Whitney Foundation was founded in love, in March 2012, in memory of beautiful Allyson Whitney Strong, 25 years young. She taught us the value of gratitude and hope. Her words still impact our lives, “At night, I try and think of at least three things I’m grateful for that day – and I truly think that it helps, when I wake up, I wake up and smile and say thank you, thank you for another day.”
Easing the Burden of a Life Interrupted
“Life Interrupted Grants™” are provided by the Allyson Whitney Foundation to U.S. citizens between the ages of 16 and 36 years of age, who are currently undergoing treatment or recently finished protocol. Grants help cover unanticipated expenses including transportation, hotels, rent, medical expenses, fertility options, integrative therapies, and wigs. Check out eligibility requirements on GRANT INFO
How Your Donation Helps
As the stewards of revenue received, we are proud to say that 100% of proceeds are allocated to our main pursuits. As an all volunteer organization, we humbled and honored to help as many as we can. On behalf of our grantees, as well as ourselves, we sincerely thank you!