Ellen Kim is a junior at Villanova University. In the summer of 2017, she will be traveling with a group of college-aged students on a 70-day, 4000+ mile ride from Baltimore, MD to San Francisco, CA, raising money and awareness for the Ulman Cancer Fund for Young Adults.
What is your connection to the cancer community?
I have worked in a hospital for the past three years as a patient care technician, and during this time I have had the privilege of meeting many patients who have been affected by cancer. My nights spent at the oncology unit are always memorable, but there is one moment in particular that stands out. Last summer, I was working the night shift in the oncology unit when one of my patients passed away from cancer, and I was tasked with preparing the body for transport to the mortuary. I will always carry with me the memory of the weight of her head in my hands, the distinction of the warmth of her bed against the back of my hand and the coldness of her body on the front, and the quiet grief of her grown children huddled outside the room.
My break was right after this, and as I walked into the cafeteria at 4AM, my head still reeling from her death, I couldn’t help but feel off-balance by the normalcy of everyone else: security guards laughing with other hospital technicians, nurses conversing with other nurses, kitchen staff eating their meals together. I was struck by how life must tread on even in the face of our greatest tragedies.
But even so, I will not forget the grace and humor that she showed me in her last days. To be able to laugh even in the face of her own mortality is a testament to her strength.
Why are you traveling over 4000 miles this summer with the Ulman Cancer Fund for Young Adults?
I have always been in awe of the tenacity of the human body and the strength of the mind in the face of life’s greatest battles. Cancer is the betrayal of this matrimony of mind, body, and spirit—when the body turns against its owner. Cancer is a thief that robs people of their autonomy, their health, their childhood, and the normalcy of life. This summer I will be biking with 4K for cancer in hopes that nobody will have to face this disease alone. I hope to challenge myself both physically and mentally with this journey and inspire and inform others to get involved with the cancer community as well.
2017 marks the 16th year of the 4K for Cancer sending young adults on journeys across the country in an effort to inspire hope and unite communities in the fight against cancer. The 4K for Cancer is a program of The Ulman Cancer Fund for Young Adults (UCF). Interested in joining the fight? Apply to be a rider or runner at www.4kforcancer.org!
Over 70,000 young adults are diagnosed with cancer every year. Young adults (ages 15-39) face a variety of unique challenges with a cancer diagnosis including fertility preservation, social isolation, lack of insurance, delayed diagnosis, and more.
The Ulman Cancer Fund for Young Adults changes lives by creating a community of support for young adults, and their loved ones, impacted by cancer. With your support, the Ulman Cancer Fund is able to provide free support services and resources for the young adult cancer community including:
Cancer to 5K - a 12-week training program designed to introduce or reintroduce cancer survivors to physical activity.
Patient Navigation - a free program (onsite at cancer centers and remotely through our office) that ensures no young adult ever faces cancer alone. We provide one-on-one support & resources to young adults and their families to help them manage the cancer experience and long-term cancer survival.
Scholarships - a financial assistance program to help young adults continue their education after being affected by cancer through their own diagnosis or the diagnosis of a loved one.
UCF House - This year UCF broke ground on a “home away from home” to provide free housing for young adult cancer patients, and their caregivers, in East Baltimore.
Your donation will help make these programs and our mission possible!
|Anonymous Friend||07/06/2017||$50.00||This is amazing! Thanks for doing this!! From the Palenchar family||Florencia Son||06/22/2017||$15.00||Jinsu Kim||05/29/2017||$200.00||Ashley Xue||05/29/2017||$50.00||glhf ur an inspiration see u on the other end||Anonymous Friend||05/19/2017||$300.00||Rachel Kim||05/18/2017||$50.00||Sounds like a great thing you're doing! Good luck and have a safe trip Ellen!! :D||Matthew Lee||05/17/2017||$300.00||Go Ellen!!! I am so very proud of your commitment to make a difference in other's lives!!! I will pray for your successful and safe journey!||Oun Pyo Hong||05/15/2017||$300.00||Jackie Cho||05/09/2017||$25.00||You go girl||Anonymous Friend||05/09/2017||$30.00||Aari Lee||05/08/2017||$50.00||Jason Hwang||04/30/2017||$20.00||Hi Ellen. You are awesome||Irene Hwang||04/29/2017||$100.00||You are an amazing human being. Love you||Anonymous Friend||04/26/2017||$50.00||good things come in multiples of 5||Shean Kim||04/25/2017||$500.00||Hope you have an awesome experience!||Hee Sook Kim||04/24/2017||$150.00||Brenna Fallows||04/19/2017||$10.00||Good luck!||Donna D Spence||04/05/2017||$50.00||Laura Spence||03/30/2017||$50.00||You are amazing!!!||Yong Ki Kim||03/28/2017||$100.00||Connie Yang||03/25/2017||$51.00||Chin up||Sunny Yoon||03/25/2017||$50.00||Anna Maria Eakins||03/25/2017||$25.00||High hopes||Bertie Wooster||03/24/2017||$10.00||Good luck!!||June Quinn||03/24/2017||$5.00||This is awesome! So proud of youuu<3||KyungYoon Nam||03/23/2017||$100.00||Go Ellen! This long and tired road shall take you to where you want to be.||Amy Kim||03/19/2017||$40.00||Always so proud to be your friend, love you!||Peter Tan||03/19/2017||$40.00||A very very good cause!!||Ellen Kim||02/22/2017||$100.00|