Posts Tagged ‘media coverage’

Cancer patient receives wig made from nurse’s hair


According to an article in the Poughkeepsie Journal, Poughkeepsie resident and breast cancer survivor Kim Ross has been presented with a wig made from hair donated by her nurse Erika Hernandez, who works in the Dyson Breast Center at Vassar Brothers Medical Center.

The wig was crafted by Wigs by Angelline of Poughkeepsie and paid for by Miles of Hope,

Read the article

Family Creates Scholarship Fund for Miles of Hope


L-R: Maryellen Benecke Dolan, Cathy Benecke Varunok, and Jeanne Benecke Corcoran

The Benecke family was devastated by the loss of their brother, Michael, to lung cancer on July 29th of this year. In his memory, they are honoring him with the Michael Benecke Scholarship Fund for students whose lives have been affected by breast cancer. The fund will be administered by the Miles of Hope Breast Cancer Foundation, which supports breast cancer programs within the eight counties of the Hudson Valley.

“Michael was a very special person. Education was very important to him, and he advocated for people who were disadvantaged and underserved. He was hard working and made his family laugh right up until the end,” said Cathy Benecke Varunok, co-founder of Miles of Hope.

“Our family has been devastated by cancer. My sister died after a breast cancer diagnosis when she was in her 30s, and my mother had the disease as well,” Mrs. Varunok said. “We wanted to remember Michael by establishing this scholarship fund in his name to help students with a financial contribution to their education.”

Mrs. Varunok started the Miles of Hope Breast Cancer Foundation ten years ago with co-founder Dana Effron to address some of the holes in the system which left breast cancer patients and their families without support.

The Foundation has four pillar programs which are funded annually: the Medical Gap Care program, helping people in treatment with a financial emergency; a peer-to-peer hotline, connecting newly diagnosed patients with trained survivors; scholarships to high school seniors whose lives have been affected by breast cancer; and Complementary Medicine programs like massage, acupuncture, exercise, music, dance and art therapies.

Miles of Hope and Marist enter into Agreement

MaristThe Miles of Hope Breast Cancer Foundation and Marist College have announced a partnership to offer reduced tuition for all non-discounted graduate and adult undergraduate programs to Miles of Hope employees and volunteers. According to the Marist office of Graduate Programs, “a 25% discount will be granted to those who are pursuing full-time or part-time graduate or adult undergraduate (age 22+) studies online or on campus.”

“We are honored that Marist has chosen to partner with Miles of Hope to allow our employees, their families and our volunteers this discount,” said Pari Forood, Executive Director of Miles of Hope. “There is nothing more important than getting a great education, and Marist is a jewel in the education crown here in our Hudson Valley.

” For the third year in a row, Marist’s online MBA program was ranked among the top 50 graduate business programs in the nation in U.S. News & World Report. Marist was the first college in New York State to gain approval to offer its entire MBA and MPA programs online.

Marist offers both on-site and online courses and programs for adult learners:
  • 30+ undergraduate degrees
  • 3 bachelor degree completion programs, 1 of which can be completed online
  • 4 undergraduate certificate programs
  • 12 graduate degree programs, 6 of which can be completed online
  • 2 advanced certificates, both of which can be completed online
“I hope many of our staff and volunteers will take advantage of this discount,” continued Ms. Forood, “a graduate degree from Marist will enhance any resume and increase job prospects.” Marist will host an information session open to the public on Saturday October 25th at 10:00 am at the Lowell Thomas Building on their main campus.

For more information email or call 845.505.8267

Hits for Hope Honoree Featured on FOX Wendy Williams Show Oct 1

During the month of October, The Wendy Williams Show will be doing makeovers for breast cancer survivors in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

On October 1st, Wendy will kick off this series with the Miles of Hope, Hits for Hope Softball Tournament Honoree Melissa Zehr of Dutchess County.

It is a LIVE broadcast to air Wednesday – Oct 1, 10:00 am on FOX.

Read about Melissa on the Hits for Hope homepage:

New Breast Cancer Car is Rolling!

dottieDottie is new and improved!

Four years ago, Mike Mullaney, CEO of the family owned and operated Hudson Cadillac Buick GMC came to the Miles of Hope Breast Cancer Foundation with an idea. He wanted to honor and remember his sister who had died of breast cancer by designating the official dealership courtesy car in her memory. The car was named Dottie after Mike’s sister and decorated with Miles of Hope bright pink logos. It became a Hudson Valley star driving people to their destinations while bringing attention and donations to Miles of Hope and breast cancer.
The drivers always reported that people either honked to show their support or waved or rolled down their windows at stop lights and thanked them for highlighting an important health crisis and the foundation that helps people affected by breast within the Hudson Valley.
And now a new Dottie (see photo) is gracing the roadways of our area. A new 2014 GMC Acadia with Miles of Hope logos is driving around town attracting attention and reminding everyone that Miles of Hope is here for anyone who needs us.
“People are thrilled to get in the car and to get picked up in her!” explained Mike Mullaney. “She is a happy as well as helpful reminder that we need to be proactive about breast cancer by encouraging women to have an annual mammogram.”

Miles of Hope Executive Director Pari Forood further explained: “Mike is a dedicated member of our team; he is on our Board of Directors and our Executive Committee and a generous supporter. We are honored to have Dottie running around Dutchess County reminding people to take care of themselves and get a mammogram.”
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have highlighted research embraced by all major cancer organizations showing that cancer risk can be reduced by leading a healthy lifestyle.
“By following 5 simple life style choices, women and men can reduce their cancer risk: daily exercise, keep body mass index at NIH approved levels, eat fruits and vegetables, one alcoholic beverage a day, quit smoking,” Ms. Forood explained.
“The Dragon Boat Race and Festival coming up on July 5th is a new event, established in collaboration with Dutchess Tourism and Arts Mid-Hudson,” Ms. Forood added. “Come to the Hudson River Rowing Association Boathouse– Dottie will be there!”

Local Salon Owner Finalist in Charity Challenge, Supports Miles of Hope

Bella Luci Salon presents check to MOH

Rebecca Lee, owner of Bella Luci Salon (center) with Miles of Hope Co-Founders Dana Effron (left) and Cathy Varunok

Rebecca Lee, owner/operator of Bella Luci Salon in Poughkeepsie has been named a finalist in the Wella “Supports Your Cause” Charity Challenge.

The Challenge awards grants to hairdressers and salon owners who demonstrate compelling dedication to community outreach programs. Rebecca Lee is among the twenty finalists.

Rebecca Lee and her Bella Luci Salon is a Miles of Hope Affiliate, and has has been a supporter of many fundraising and awareness events with Miles of Hope, including the annual Silhouette of a Woman Fashion Show.

For more information, see the article in Salon Today.

Dyson Center Director Named a Breast Cancer Champion

top-dyson Article in Poughkeepsie Journal: “Dr. Angela Keleher, director and lead breast surgeon at the Dyson Center for Cancer Care at Vassar Brothers Medical Center, was recently named a Breast Cancer Champion by Yoplait and the American Cancer Society.” [Read the article]

Dr. Keleher was awarded $15,500 to study the potential benefits of therapeutic massage before breast surgery. The Dyson Center has offered therapeutic massage to its patients since 2006 thanks to a grant from Miles of Hope Foundation.

Local Company Paints the Roads Pink!

Pink Moving TruckArnoff Moving and Storage has painted three of their trucks pink in honor of the Miles of Hope Breast Cancer Foundation. The trucks are 35′ long custom built trailers specifically designed for the pick-up and delivery of household goods and storage, military members long term storage, and small local moves.
The trailers were reconditioned and painted by a Hudson River Valley family business, outside of Albany, NY, which specializes in trailer repair and painting.
Michael Arnoff, President of Arnoff Moving and Storage said: “In honor of our family’s 9th consecutive year of involvement with this grass roots Breast Cancer support foundation, we decided to take our support to the next level by helping spread the foundation’s name via three of these trailers criss-crossing the entire Hudson Valley.”
Pari Forood, Executive Director of Miles of Hope expressed the Foundation’s gratitude: “This is the 3rd company which has painted our logo on the side of their vehicle,”she explained. “Bottini Fuel, Hudson Cadillac Buick GMC, and now Arnoff have honored us by creating these moving billboards. They serve to remind a large audience in our region that Miles of Hope is funding support services for anyone affected by breast cancer within the 8 counties of the Hudson Valley.”

Prevention – Does It Have a Role in Breast Cancer Treatment?


by Pari Forood, Executive Director, Miles of Hope

Published in The Poughkeepsie Journal, 2011

Poughkeepsie Journal

Studies have shown that the better your physical condition, the less likely you are to succumb to heart disease and certain types of cancer including breast cancer. At the Miles of Hope Breast Cancer Foundation, we make it our business to encourage women to get on the court, field, track and in the lake by sponsoring tournaments for all abilities and all ages. Hoops for Hope Women’s Basketball Tournament, Family Fun Run, Miles of Hope Triathlon, Goals for Hope Women’s Soccer Tournament and the Community Walk for Breast Cancer challenge women whether competitive by nature or by necessity to get into shape and embrace a healthy active lifestyle.

However if there is breast cancer in your family, or if you are deemed high risk for the disease by any number of markers, is there something you can do proactively to prevent it?


Letter to the Editor: Miles of Hope Supporters Helped Raise $84,000* at Walk

Walk organizers 2011

Nancy Miller and Ellen Staino, Walk 2011 Organizers

To the Editor of the Poughkeepsie Journal,

As co-chairwomen of the Miles of Hope Community Walk held Oct. 2 at James Baird State Park, we would like to take this opportunity to thank all the sponsors, volunteers and supporters of this very successful event. This year there were more people who came out and walked than ever before. We are thrilled to report the event raised over $84,000!*

We can’t begin to thank everybody involved by name in this letter, the list would be too long; and we would be afraid we would leave someone out. But to the many people who supported this event, we are extremely humbled and grateful for your generosity.

Your support allows the mission of the Miles of Hope Breast Cancer Foundation to continue. All funds raised in the Hudson Valley are used to support programs in the Hudson Valley. Some of the programs include the Medical Gap Care Fund, scholarships for college-bound seniors, Peer-to-Peer Program and complementary medicine (massage therapy, reiki, exercise/dance). To all who supported the Miles of Hope Breast Cancer Foundation Community Walk we say thank you, thank you, thank you!

Nancy Miller, Poughkeepsie
Ellen Staino, Poughkeepsie
Co-chairwomen, Miles of Hope Community Walk for Breast Cancer 2011

Published in the Poughkeepsie Journal November 12, 2011

*IMPORTANT UPDATE: The article originally said $60,000. Good news: Current figures show the Walk proceeds at $84,000 this year!