Foundation's First Grant Helps Ashburn Woman
The Malea Renee Kanoho Foundation, established to help women battling breast cancer, provided a $4K grant to help pay medical expenses.
Just four days after the launch of the Malea Renee Kanoho Foundation, founder Jason Kanoho presented an Ashburn woman a $4,000 grant to help pay for her breast cancer treatments.
“It was important to me to let people know that we are really here to support people, and that if we have funding, we’re going to give it,” Kanoho said.
The Foundation presented the money to Nancy Betz, 38, who was diagnosed with breast cancer in August. The disease has spread to her liver and lymph nodes. Betz lost her full-time job and health insurance in 2010. She later was able to get some health coverage under the Affordable Health Care Act but was struggling to keep up with out-of- pocket costs, such as large co-pays and deductibles. Betz's siblings set up a website to help raise funds for her treatments: http://www.rippleeffectproductions.com/Nancy/
In January, Kanoho met Betz at an art show for a mutual friend. After Kanoho learned that Betz was fighting breast cancer, he told her about the foundation he was launching to honor his late wife’s vision to help breast cancer victims in Loudoun County. Betz said she had read about his wife’s battle and had donated money to help her pay for treatments.
“When I woke up the next morning, it came to me,” Kanoho said. “Malea would have wanted me to help her.”
Betz said the grant will be a huge help in her struggle.
“I’m overwhelmed by the generosity of strangers,” she said. “It makes me know that there are so many good people out there. It gives me hope.”
The Malea Renee Kanoho Foundation provides financial and emotional support to Loudoun County women under the age of 40 who are battling breast cancer. The foundation provides grants for out-of-pocket expenses and provides emotional support through a team of volunteers to help with childcare, errands, transportation, housework or whatever is needed.
The Ashburn Pub, one of the foundation’s primary sponsors, held fundraisers for Malea, who passed away in 2012, and served as the venue for the foundation’s kickoff ceremony. Future fundraisers for the foundation include the Pub’s annual Golf Tournament in June and the annual Loudoun County Chili Cook Off.
“Jason was one of the first musicians to play at the Pub and was always so giving of his time and talent, and I never forgot that,” said Ashburn Pub co-owner Kevin Bednarz. “So when it came time for us to help him, it was a no brainer.”
Betz encouraged other breast cancer victims struggling to pay for treatments to reach out to the foundation.
“There’s a lot of support out there,” he said. “If you think there’s nowhere to go, you just have to reach out, and there will be someone there willing to help.”
To make a donation or apply for a grant, visit the foundation’s website.