Chanhassen High School student Lauren Moe’s focus changed when her mother was diagnosed with Stage III breast cancer in 2012; and her experiences watching her mother deal with the side-effects of chemotherapy has inspired her to find a way to help other patients in a tangible way and to educate the community about the challenges they face as a result of treatment.
The Lauren’s Chemo Bags project has become a passion for Lauren and an army of volunteers who help assemble and deliver them. Bags containing various products to help to relieve side-effects such as dry mouth; sensitive skin; weakened immune system; hair loss, nausea and a metallic taste in the mouth, along with uplifting and motivational cards, were first delivered to Minnesota Oncology’s Waconia Clinic where her mother received her cancer care. Bags go to both male and female patients with various cancer diagnoses.
“The smiles on patient faces, the reaction of clinical staff and sometimes happy tears make all the hard work worth the effort. I’ve also been blessed to meet so many wonderful people,” says Lauren.
Since then, bags have been delivered to our Chaska and Edina clinics as well as other healthcare organizations in the metro and Southwest Minnesota.
Beyond that, the ripple effect of blessings has been astounding. Volunteers Lauren tapped into at the Shakopee Women’s Correctional Facility have found new meaning to their time there, knowing that they are making a valuable contribution to the local community. Other volunteers from Chaska elementary and middle schools, as well as the Rotary Club have contributed and benefited from taking part in this worthy project.
Lauren is now heading off to Duke University where she hopes to become a physician….and where she also hopes to bring the Chemo Bag project to campus organizations and assist patients in North Carolina. In her absence, several clubs and organizations have graciously committed to keeping the project going here in Minnesota.
Lauren says that she hopes to impact even more people around the country and the globe in her future endeavors….and nobody who knows her or has been touched by her project can doubt that she will.
To learn more or donate, click here.