Sunday, November 4, 2007

Eve Coleman Memorial Fund

Some months ago, Jon told me that when we got married he didn't want to register for gifts because he'd prefer the money be given to charity. As many a bride or groom can imagine, I balked. No gifts? But what about all the people who love us and want to give us gifts to celebrate our new life together? But how would we afford all the things that would help us make a comfortable home together, as opposed to the hodge-podge of old dishes, ripped sheets, and uncomfortable furniture we live with now? He began to see my point.

As they often do, our ideas came together into an even better one. We decided that when the time came, we would set up a fund in honor of my Mom that would donate money to a worthy, breast cancer-related organization.

Now, as we plan our wedding, we have started the Eve Coleman Memorial Fund at Roper St. Francis Hospital, where Mom was a patient. The money raised by the Fund will be used to provide treatment to underfunded breast cancer patients who are part of the Breast Health Navigator Program.

What is the Program?
The Breast Health Navigator Program began at Roper in 2003. It is headed by an
oncology-certified advanced practice nurse (the Navigator). Though my Mom didn’t get to experience it, her favorite nurse later became the hospital’s first Navigator.

When a patient receives a positive biopsy, the Navigator contacts the patient to offer assistance and provide support. The Navigator then acts as an advocate and resource who directs the patient to information regarding diagnosis, treatment and recovery.

What Services Does the Program Include?
-Give support to patients with a new diagnosis, recurrence, coping problems, end-of-life issues and/or family support needs
-Serve as a consistent and knowledgeable clinical resource throughout the treatment continuum
-Act as a link between care providers and treatment settings
-Identify and meet ongoing learning needs of patients and families
-Provide educational programs on breast health to professional and community groups

Where Will The Fund Money Go?
The Navigator will oversee the utilization of the money we raise, which will be dispersed on a first come, first served basis to the patients most in need.

Roper already offers free mammogram and diagnostic breast imaging procedures to eligible low-income women, and the Roper St. Francis Cancer Center has kindly offered to waive facility charges for the women being treated with the Fund's money. This means that the money we raise will go towards patients' contiuum of care, which includes supplies, professional fees, and other necessary supportive needs.

What Is The Blog’s Purpose?
While Roper cannot share patient-specific uses of the Fund due to confidentiality rules, it will track and share how the money is expensed.
Watermelon Shoes will be our venue for sharing how the Fund money is spent, and will track monies raised (we will not mention specific contributors unless they approve it).

In addition, many of you didn't have the opportunity to meet Eve, but we hope you'll get to know her here, where we'll share more about her, post her writing and poems, photos, and other related information. Roper will also share the blog with its patients – we hope it will inspire them as they fight their illness.

If you have questions or would like to share a memory or thought about Eve, we welcome you to email watermelonshoes[at] Please indicate if you’d like your message posted.
Please send your donation to:
Roper St. Francis Foundation
25 Doughty Street, Suite 790
Charleston, SC 29403
Attention Annette Shepard
Re: Eve Coleman Memorial Fund

Roper is a federal and state income tax exempt organization per section 501(c)3 of the IRS tax code. As a corporation d/b/a Roper Hospital, Incorporated (RHI), its federal tax ID is #57-0828733.
Thank you!
Jennifer & Jon

Special thanks to Scott Broome at the Roper St. Francis Cancer Center for his assistance, and to Dr. David Ellison, who always goes above and beyond as both doctor and family.

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