HOPE Fund – Helping Oncology Patients Everyday

Cancer does not discriminate but touches lives of every background. While the HOPE Fund provides resources for all McLeod cancer patients, the needs are often more acute for those with financial challenges.

Gifts like yours, provide help with the many socio-economic issues that present barriers to care for this vulnerable population. Services include assistance with transportation, pain and nausea medications, special nutrition, as well as many other individualized patient needs.

  • HOPE Fund Donors Respond to Critical Appeal for Transportation Funding

    A Heartfelt Thank You From a Grateful Patient

    You came to the rescue for cancer patients who struggle with transportation to their lifesaving treatments.


    As gas prices soared this summer, the HOPE (Helping Oncology Patients Everyday) Fund transportation budget was completely overwhelmed. But compassionate donors, like you, were there for our patients. You ensured they could continue their to fight to survive by providing individualized assistance with not only transportation but nutrition, medication, rent and many additional financial needs.

    Clyde Davis, a 76-year-old gentleman from Cheraw is one of the many patients you have helped.

    Clyde is single and lives at an assisted living facility in Cheraw. A motorcycle accident in 1978 resulted in Clyde’s leg being amputated. The accident left him disabled and unable to drive.

    Last year, Clyde was concerned when he felt an unusual lump which led him to see his primary care physician in Cheraw. He was then referred to McLeod Oncologist Dr. Ravneet Bajwa, who diagnosed Clyde with a hip sarcoma. Dr. Bajwa arranged an appointment for Clyde with a McLeod Surgeon to have the tumor removed.

    After the surgery, Clyde learned that he would have to travel to the McLeod Cancer Center in Florence every day for six weeks of radiation treatment to ensure all the cancer cells were eradicated. However, Clyde did not have anyone who could make the commitment to drive him day in and day out. He did not know where to turn for help.

    You can imagine Clyde’s relief when he learned from McLeod Cancer Center Social Worker Raquel Serrano that because of HOPE Fund donors, his transportation would be provided.

    “My life has been complicated by my accident,” explained Clyde. “But when I had nowhere to turn, I learned of the wonderful people who had given to help me. I can never thank you enough for allowing me to receive my lifesaving treatments.” Your generous response to help with ongoing transportation struggles during the gas price crisis has given hope to patients in their battle to survive. On behalf of Clyde and so many others, thank you.

  • Loyal Donor Enthusiastically Supports the HOPE Fund

    Regular Updates Inspire Years of Dedicated Support

    Harry Gardner, a longtime donor to the McLeod Health Foundation, became passionate about the HOPE (Helping Oncology Patients Everyday) Fund because of special friendships.


    Harry was first made aware of the fund by his friend, Asa Godbold. Asa’s late wife, Marilyn, served on the HOPE Fund Advisory Committee and spoke highly of the impact it had on the lives of cancer patients.

    When Harry then learned that his friend, Robin Aiken, had helped establish the HOPE Fund, it felt like a full-circle moment.

    Growing up, Harry had been a classmate of Robin’s sister, Wana Kaye Hutchinson Rhodes. Later in life, Wana Kaye’s journey with pancreatic cancer would inspire Robin and her family to establish the HOPE Fund.

    While accompanying her sister to treatments at Duke University Hospital, near Wana Kaye’s home in Pinehurst, North Carolina, Robin learned about a fund that helped low-income patients with immediate needs receive assistance during their cancer treatment. After McLeod Health opened the new Cancer Center in 2013, Robin, a McLeod Foundation Board Member, approached Foundation staff about starting a similar fund at McLeod. The following year, the HOPE Fund was established.

    “I support this fund every year because I know that each penny goes to help cancer patients,” Harry shares. “It is a way for me to give back, but also to honor and remember friends I have lost to cancer, including Wana Kaye and Marilyn.”

    Harry, like many Foundation donors, looks forward to the newsletters that update him on the ways his gifts have been put to work to help others. And, he is inspired to continue his support through the annual appeal letter.

    “When I read the annual letter from a McLeod Oncologist and the note from Robin, I am always moved to send in my support,” states Harry. “Through their correspondence I understand more fully the pressing needs of the program and patients.”

    All at McLeod Health are grateful for donors like you and Harry, who are inspired to give our patients hope. You are a blessing to those in need.

  • Family Lessons Inspire a Legacy of Giving

    McLeod Oncologist Learned Generosity Through a Special Role Model

    Growing up in Sri Lanka, Dr. Vijeyaluxmy Motilal Nehru watched her father give selflessly of his time and skills. A busy attorney, he regularly took pro bono cases to help those in need. This inspiring man passed away at the young age of 57, but he left a legacy of giving for his daughter.


    Dr. Nehru now gives selflessly of her time, skills and gifts as the newest Oncologist at McLeod Oncology and Hematology Associates in Florence.

    Dr. Nehru is already much loved by her patients, whose extraordinary empathy is demonstrated by her deep concern for their well-being.

    “When you are treating a patient, you are not just treating the disease, you are treating the whole person,” Dr. Nehru explained. “You must also take care of the other things that are going on in their life. It is important to lend a helping hand so they can concentrate on the most important thing — actually fighting their cancer.”

    Shortly after her arrival, Dr. Nehru was pleased to learn of the HOPE (Helping Oncology Patients Everyday) Fund. The HOPE Fund was established to assist cancer patients with immediate and urgent needs. Through it, her patients have received assistance for basic financial struggles like transportation, rent, nutrition and supplies.

    Following in the example of her father, Dr. Nehru wanted to personally support the HOPE Fund. She decided to make a generous commitment to the HOPE Fund Endowment, which will help ensure critical funding for patients in the years to come.

    “I believe that those who have much are under an obligation to help,” Dr. Nehru shared. “We are our brother’s and sister’s keepers. We owe it to people who are less fortunate.”

    Through the HOPE Fund Endowment, Dr. Nehru ensures her father’s legacy of giving continues.

    “I just think of my dad, my role model,” Dr. Nehru said. “He did so much. I now must do my own part to help.”

  • HOPE Fund – Helping Patients When They Need It The Most

    The HOPE Fund was created to break down barriers that oncology patients face when dealing with the financial effects of cancer and cancer treatment. Gifts made in support of the HOPE Fund help fund patient support services. Recent milestone of the HOPE Fund is the establishment of the HOPE Resource Center locate on the Concourse in the Cancer Center.

  • The HOPE Endowment Fund Ensures Future Funding

    Generous donors to the HOPE Fund have learned how their gifts can have an immediate impact on patients during their cancer journey.

    The HOPE Fund Advisory Committee recognized the critical nature of many of the programs which are funded through annual gifts. As they have looked strategically to the future of the efforts it was decided that establishing an HOPE Endowment would ensure funding for some of the most essential services for generations to come.

    An Endowment Fund was established in 2017 with an initial gift from the McLeod Volunteer Auxiliary. A goal of $1million has been set to allow eventual proceeds be available to fund the most critical services.

  • Legacies of HOPE …

    The HOPE Fund Advisory Committee directs these essential funds given by supporters like you. These dedicated volunteers recognized the critical nature of many of the programs which are funded through your gifts. As they look strategically to the future, the need for a HOPE Fund Endowment was vitally important. The earnings from the Endowment would provide funding for some of the most crucial services for our patients.