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Wichita Cancer Foundation’s New Office Brings Resources, Bolstering Support for Kansans in Need
Cancer patients in Kansas are struggling due to job loss and financial hardship. COVID19 has contributed to the stress and pressure felt by those diagnosed with cancer and their families.
The Wichita Cancer Foundation, a 501©(3) nonprofit, provides assistance to qualified applicants across Kansas through its insurance premium payment program. In late March, the Foundation took over a suite in a medical building on the campus of Ascension Via Christi St. Francis in downtown Wichita. This space, donated by Ascension, has allowed the Foundation to expand its resources. Applicants can come in with questions or to complete the online application. Volunteers can coordinate statewide advocacy efforts and the Executive Director, Wyatt Sheeder, can meet with current and potential supporters.
Founded in 2014 by Dr. Shaker Dakhil and his daughter Laura Dakhil Monahan, the mission of the Foundation is: Funding Care – Funding Hope. With Laura’s corporate law background and Dr. Dakhil’s unmatched knowledge of the oncology world, they believed they could combine their expertise to make a true difference. Since its founding, the Wichita Cancer Foundation has assisted over 250 people. The impact is felt not only by those receiving the assistance, but also their families.
In 2020, the Wichita Cancer Foundation provided insurance premium payment assistance for 37 individuals from 9 counties in Kansas. While the average monthly premium was $625, it gave access to care and services worth many times that amount. Applications are considered based on factors including financial need and dependent upon actively receiving cancer care or treatment in Kansas.
The Care Committee, a group of volunteers selected to review applications, has noted a 25% increase in applications for the first two quarters of 2021 compared to the same time pre-COVID in 2019. During the last quarter of 2020, applications were up 125% from that time in 2019. The Foundation is 100% donor-funded by individual and corporate donors. It is the goal of the Board of Directors that no qualified applicant is turned down due to lack of funding.
To find out more about applying for assistance or supporting the Wichita Cancer Foundation, visit www.wichitacancerfoundationorg.