Fund Delivers Grants to Women With Cancer

Denise Kaley

Denise Kaley

(SHEFFIELD, Mass.) – The Denise Kaley Fund for Berkshire County Women With Cancer just awarded its 69th grant since being founded in March 2010 to help Berkshire County women struggling with both cancer and extreme financial distress. The Denise Kaley Fund was founded by its namesake and Barbara Bonner a few weeks before Kaley’s death from lung cancer to support her desire to help the women she grew to know in her own journey through cancer.

Having received 920 gifts ranging from $8 to $4,000 over its short life, the Fund – administered by Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation – has begun to make a dramatic impact.  Says fund advisor Barbara Bonner:  “We are the quiet fund, the little engine that could.  Without great fanfare but with the continued, fantastic outpouring of generous support from our amazing Berkshire community, we have been able to really help the lives of some extraordinarily brave women in our region”.

Densie Kaley Fund cancer patient recipient Jessica Lemon (photo John Dolan)

Densie Kaley Fund cancer patient recipient Jessica Lemon (photo John Dolan)

In addition to Bonner, Fund Advisory Committee members Beth Rose and Ellen Boyd receive grant requests from the fund’s Community Referral Network in the three hospitals in the region: Cheryl Thomson at Fairview Hospital, Kathy Hart at Berkshire Medical Center and Beth Hinkley Mougin at the North Adams VNA and Hospice of Northern Berkshire.

Requests are reviewed as soon as they are received and funds are often granted the same day.  As Bonner says: “The Fund makes grants that no other fund is making — to support the day to day lives of women with cancer. These are the often-invisible women in our community – the single mothers, the elderly women living alone, and the immigrant population with no support network.  Often they lose their jobs because of cancer.  They fall behind in paying heat, rent, food, car payments, all the basics of life that many of us are lucky enough to take for granted.”

To learn more about the Fund or make a donation visit Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation or contact the Foundation at 413-229-0370.

For over 25 years, Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation has built stronger communities and helped donors make a difference through charitable giving in northwest Litchfield County, Conn.; Berkshire County, Mass.; and Columbia County and northeast Duchess County, N.Y.  Each year, the foundation distributes over $7 million through grants and scholarships to nonprofits and individuals in the arts and education, health and human services and environmental protection.  Berkshire Taconic is a 501 ©(3) nonprofit public charity.

 

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