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American Cancer Society offers support through the holidays

December 24, 2011
Reinbeck Courier

Help is Available 24/7 during this challenging time of the year

The holidays are a time of joy and celebration, but if you're dealing with cancer - either through your own illness or that of a loved one this time of the year may be especially challenging. The American Cancer Society offers free information, day-to-day help and emotional support to help you through every step of your cancer journey, so you or your loved one can focus on getting well, even during the holidays.

Cancer information is available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year at 1-800-227-2345. The same is true of the information at, the Society's comprehensive and trusted Web site.

"I just want people to be aware of the help that's available," said Lynn Carlson, a Realtor in Des Moines and a cancer survivor. "When I was diagnosed and felt scared, I knew that even in the middle of the night I could call the American Cancer Society's toll-free number (1-800-227-2345) and get information. I could talk to someone who could ease my fears and make me feel better."

The best example of holiday care may come from the American Cancer Society Hope Lodge network. An American Cancer Society Hope Lodge offers cancer patients and their caregiver a free, temporary place to stay when their best hope for quality treatment may be far from home.

The Russell and Ann Gerdin American Cancer Society Hope Lodge in Iowa City is currently operating at 100 percent capacity. It has been that way since August of 2009. It is expected to remain that way for the foreseeable future, and a 1-2 week waiting list exists.

"We try to make it fun for the guests and caregivers with presents, meals, and other seasonal things," said Kelly Lamb, Hope Lodge Manager. "When you strip away everything else, helping people is what the season is supposed to be about, and that's what we do here."

Roughly six to ten guests are expected to stay over the Christmas holiday weekend to remain in treatment.

The American Cancer Society combines an unyielding passion with nearly a century of experience to save lives and end cancer for good. As a global grassroots force of three million volunteers, they fight for every birthday threatened by every cancer in every community. They save lives by helping you stay well by preventing cancer or detecting it early, helping you get well by being there for you during and after a diagnosis, by finding cures through groundbreaking discovery and fighting back through public policy. As the nation's largest non-governmental investor in cancer research, contributing about $3.6 billion, they turn what they know about cancer into what they do. As a result, more than 11 million people in America who have had cancer and countless more who have avoided it will be celebrating birthdays this year. To learn more, or to get help, call any time, day or night, at 1-800-227-2345 or visit



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