Sonali Verma is a senior at University of California, Berkeley. In the summer of 2018, she will be traveling with a group of college-aged students on a 70-day, 4000+ mile bike 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 was diagnosed with Leukemia during my freshman year of high school. Due to my compromised immune system, I was taken out of public school and spent three years in-and-out of hospitals. It was difficult to stay connected with friends or spend time outdoors due to risk of infection. Even though I had a strong support system, I had never felt so disconnected from my community.
During my third year of treatment, I attended a summer camp for teenagers living with cancer (Camp Okizu!). For the first time, I met people my age living with cancer. They provided me with a support community I didn't know I needed. After reaching recovery, I've made it my goal to be there for as many cancer patients as possible, to show them that they are not alone in their uphill climb.
Why are you traveling over 4000 miles this summer with the Ulman Cancer Fund for Young Adults?
After a diagnosis, every cancer patient scours the internet to find survivorship stories to give them hope. I wouldn't have had the courage to fight, without the stories of patients who showed me that things get better, one day at a time. I want to pay it forward and help my peers focus on the silver lining - whether they have a hip replacement, like me, had to give up a sport/hobby due to chemotherapy, or are struggling to come to terms with their diagnosis. The 4K for cancer is a great opportunity to support those who are still fighting - and those who stood by me - all while forming stronger connections with members of the cancer community from across the United States.
2018 marks the 17th 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 a 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!
|Anthony Venida||08/11/2018||$25.00||Day 70, you made it. I told you 70+ days ago that I would see you on the other side and just by pure (wo)man power, you biked across the damn country. You have no idea how proud I am and how fulfilling it makes me feel to be able to share what the 4K is all about with you. You persisted, you told your legs to shut up when things got tough, and you made such strong connections to the cancer community this summer. Congrats mentee :)||Asha Varma||05/30/2018||$100.00||Anonymous Friend||05/22/2018||$50.00||Nivita Verma||05/17/2018||$31.00||So proud of you Sonali! May God continue to bless you on your journey. Enjoy your biking adventure - woohoo! Love you. Nivita||Balak/Meera Verma||05/17/2018||$31.00||Dear Sonali, we are very proud of you . you are doing for such a noble cause. Please take care of yourself. May Lord bless you. We love you. Love, Dadi/Dada||Usha Rana||05/17/2018||$50.00||Roland Fernandez||05/17/2018||$50.00||God Bless You. Thank you for raising cancer awareness. Cancer affects not only the cancer victim, but also family and friends, emotionally, physically and religiously. My Mom was initially diagnosed with breast cancer while visiting Lourdes in France when she felt itchiness on her chest. Upon checking at the hotel room, my parents discovered spots on her chest. My brother in law Jim learned thru his contacts of an experimental cancer treatment at UC San Francisco my Mom participated in, which extended my Mom’s life from a short expected time to 15 years! She fought and attended her cancer treatments 1 to 2 times a week every year with my Dad’s assistance, God Bless him for his exhausting efforts for 15 years. Ultimately, Cancer prevailed over time after 15 long years and the cancer was found in her liver. My Mom was told about it and decided to forego an operation any more treatments. She was on home hospice treatment. 21 drug prescriptions later including Morphine which my Dad, Sister and I very reluctantly administered knowing it will ultimately lead to her final physical death happened. Cancer needs to be stopped and a cure needs to be found. God Bless Everyone. Roland Fernandez||Anshu Gupta||05/16/2018||$20.00||Keep it up!||Indu Khanna||05/16/2018||$50.00||Bindia Patel||05/16/2018||$25.00||Harish Thakur||05/16/2018||$101.00||Ride hard, be safe! Much Love Sonali!!!!||Prem Bajaj||05/16/2018||$100.00||Great job Sonali.||Arvind Bir||05/16/2018||$50.00||Best of Luck Sonali! - Rahul, Shreya, Parul and Arvind||Gail Blanco||05/16/2018||$100.00||Best of luck to you and your friends on this endeavor. My daughter too is an A.L.L. survivor. I am a cyclist and know the challenges and joys of the adventure you’re about to undertake. May you have nothing but Tailwinds||Gregory Phan||05/16/2018||$200.00||Tara Ab||05/16/2018||$25.00||Preeti Sareen||05/16/2018||$50.00||Good luck Sonali||Susan Wheat||05/16/2018||$25.00||Happy trails ❤️ Enjoy your epic journey!||Pankaj Jha||05/16/2018||$251.00||Sonali, I'm so very proud of you for your drive and empathy!! Best wishes for the cross-country trip!||Anonymous Friend||05/16/2018||$20.00||Shubhana Gupta||05/16/2018||$50.00||Alekhya Bommireddipalli||05/06/2018||$25.00||So proud of you, Sonali!! Love you and GOOD LUCK!! :)||Vidya Awasty||05/04/2018||$100.00||You're inspiring Sonali!! Love you, kill it!||Ani Surumpudi||05/03/2018||$20.00||So sick that you're doing this!!! Best of luck <3||Dipika Kasliwal||05/03/2018||$20.00||this is so inspiring, i love that you live every moment to the fullest :') GOOD LUCK!||Mary Hui||05/02/2018||$50.00||You are such an inspiration Sonali! Best of luck and enjoy the journey!||Sangeeta Talwar||05/02/2018||$50.00||Amy Philip||04/24/2018||$25.00||Good luck! I love you and am so proud of you!||Max Makhijani||03/27/2018||$25.00||Priya Shah||03/23/2018||$50.00||Jasmaninder Singh||03/20/2018||$30.00||Thank you and Good Luck! I wish I could donate more as my finances are kinda low for last couple of years. Have a great journey with Biking and living.||Roopa Mathur||03/18/2018||$101.00||You should be so proud of yourself. Stay healthy stay happy! Pushpa, Prabodh, and Roopa Mathur (friends of Anju and Baby)||Sanjay and Sonali Mehra||03/16/2018||$100.00||We are so proud of you Sonali! You go girl :)||Karan Khurana||03/16/2018||$50.00||We are proud of you Sonali for making this initiative. God bless you!||Anonymous Friend||03/16/2018||$50.00||Thank you for the challenge||Tanya Wankawalla||03/15/2018||$20.00||You are so amazing, I am out of words! <3||Anjali Thakur||03/15/2018||$101.00||Kudos Sonali, so proud of you!!!!! All the best on the journey, let's celebrate when you're back!! Loads of love!||Pramod Jc||03/14/2018||$20.00||Milan Das||03/14/2018||$50.00||You go girl ;)||Alka Murthy||03/14/2018||$17.73||Go Sonali!! xoxo Alka||Jessica Liu||03/14/2018||$20.00||!!!||Karan Das||03/14/2018||$20.00||:)||Pratyusha Gogulapati||03/14/2018||$50.00||Wishing you the best of luck :)||Aashna Patel||03/09/2018||$20.00||You are such an inspiration in my life <3 unbelievably proud of you! Go get em girl :)||Saundarya Mehra||03/08/2018||$100.00||So proud of you Sonali, and all the kindness you give to friends, family and the rest of the world. Here's to just the beginning of all you are going to accomplish in the world! Love you||Anonymous Friend||03/06/2018||$10.00||Wow, good luck Sonali!||Anu Verma||03/03/2018||$100.00||Best of luck||Anonymous Friend||02/20/2018||$200.00||Good luck, so proud of you!||Anonymous Friend||10/23/2017||$1,860.49||Facebook Fundraiser Donations: Siddharth Seth Vaishali Amin Nikita Jain Leela Amladi Ranju Subramani Alka Murthy Palak Thakur Rohit Gupta Shorya Ghai Sangeeta Talwar Asha Varma Kabir Sethi Rajesh Verma Swarn Verma Anjali Thakur||Sonali Verma||10/20/2017||$100.00|