Just-A-Break: Helping People With Cancer Embrace Life

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Three years ago the Thorpe family’s lives were changed forever when the matriarch, Jennifer Thorpe, was diagnosed with advanced stage cancer. Despite the dire diagnosis, the Thorpe family made a conscious choice to celebrate life every day. Jennifer’s motto was, “Lift up our heads and be of good cheer.”

Jennifer handled the challenges of cancer gracefully, always smiling, being positive, and wanting to help others. Often she would meet families who were struggling with the same problems and challenges she was and she would induce her husband, Greg, to go purchase items for these families. With the help of nurses and social workers, they would then have them delivered anonymously to these families. This was the catalyst for JUST-a-BREAK.

After Jennifer passed away Greg knew he needed to continue helping cancer patients and their families, so he started a foundation called JUST-a-BREAK (short for Just a Break from Cancer). The goal is to give cancer patients reprieve from the rigger and demands of cancer treatment. JUST-a-BREAK holds fundraisers, charity yard sales, and takes direct donations from the community (they also partner with businesses). They use those donations to solicit local restaurants, hotels and entertainment venues to create getaway packages, giving these cancer patients an evening or weekend a way.

Greg sometimes can’t believe how generous people are.

I’m blown away. Um, the event like this today, how generous people are, and if you give people a chance to be kind and giving and generous most people will jump all over that opportunity.


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