Cancer continues to cause heartache for families across Person County, but organizers of last week’s Cancer Symposium hope they can raise the level of awareness within the community regarding the resources that are available to cancer patients, their caregivers and their loved ones.
The event, in its fifth year, was sponsored by the Person Family Medical and Dental Centers.
Each year the event has grown, according to PFMC outreach specialist Brenda Hunt-Moore.
“The first year, we did it in the lobby of Person Family Medical Center, but after that we had to move it to Piedmont Community College. We may find ourselves having to look for a larger venue.
More than 150 people turned out for last Thursday night’s event, which included a sobering speech from Amanda Everett, the mother of a two-time cancer survivor who talked about how she dealt with the challenges of raising a child through cancer.
Hunt-Moore said a vendor fair also helped provide more information to cancer patients and their family members. Several organizations manned booths in the back of the room highlighting services for cancer patients and their families, from wigmakers and specialty bra-makers to social service organizations that can provide financial resources to cancer patients in need.
“We want the community to understand that we are helpers, one to another,” said Hunt-Moore. “That’s our goal, to make people aware of the resources that are out there.”
Hunt-Moore said the event has grown from year to year because people are talking about it.
“It seems like if they came last year, they came again this year and they brought at least one person with them,” Hunt-Moore said.
The event was emceed by Miss North Carolina Amanda Badgett and included remarks from Roxboro Mayor Merilyn Newell and brief presentations from a number of vendors and sponsors.
The event concluded with a hair show put on by PCC cosmetology students intended to display some of the options available to cancer patients who suffer hair loss during cancer treatments.