American Cancer Society Hope Lodge Jerome L. Greene Family Center—
New York, NY
Stories & Comments
Strength Blossoms - Sherry Matthews
Since Hope Lodge opened last year, it has transformed life with cancer for more than 2,200 guests. That transformation is most evident by the stay of Hope Lodge guest Sherry Matthews, who arrived in March 2008. Sherry was working as a temporary employee in New York City when she was diagnosed with stage-3 breast cancer at the age of 43.
“The diagnosis was a shock. I needed treatment immediately but had no health insurance. I was scared to death and uncertain where to turn, “ said Sherry.
Unable to work during her treatment, Sherry could no longer afford the room she was renting and needed a place to stay. The hospital social worker told her about Hope Lodge NYC and arranged for her stay there.
When Sherry moved into Hope Lodge, she felt overwhelmed and confined herself to her room. But as weeks went by she slowly began to emerge and participate with other guests in lodge activities. “I was able to build confidence by participating in activities and not feel so alone. I'm surrounded by people who truly understand. They've become my second family,” said Sherry.
She continued to blossom and gain strength through her treatment by volunteering-even starting her own fundraising team, “Check Your Headlights”, for the local Making Strides breast cancer walk.
Sherry's humor and brightness became an inspiration to everyone at Hope Lodge, including visitor, Robin Roberts of the Good Morning America television program.
Robin Roberts first visited Hope Lodge in April 2008, where she met Sherry just as she was beginning her treatment and continued to follow her cancer journey through February 2009, including featuring her on a Good Morning America segment.
“I have fallen in love with Hope Lodge, this sanctuary of hope and Sherry Matthews. Sherry embodies all the inspiration and strength Hope Lodge offers,” said Robin, “Free lodging is so important but it's the strength we get from others that is key to survival.”
Guest & Visitor Comments
”This is our second stay at Hope Lodge, NYC, and again we are overwhelmed by the generosity and compassion shown us.
My husband, Dennis, was diagnosed with multiple myeloma. After months of chemo,he went into remission, but then needed a stem cell transplant. This was arranged through the cancer center, and we were told his hospital stay could be up to 4 weeks. Then we were offered the option of having the procedure as an ‘outpatient,’ if I were able to be with him as caregiver.
Hope Lodge made this possible. Without the generosity of your facility, the financial burden of staying in NYC would have been very great. Besides lifting the financial burden, even more important were the emotional benefits of not having to be in the hospital while receiving treatment. Thank you with all our hearts.” - Alexis & Denis - Phillipsburg, New Jersey
“We can’t begin to express how pleased and supported we feel with all that has been done to make our stay here so comfortable and convenient. We were especially impressed with the way our ‘emergency’ was handled by the night manager and of course, by the NYPD Emergency Service. It was all handled so professionally and with such genuine concern for my wife.
Your facility is certainly a blessing for the visitor, and a great financial relief from what could have been an overwhelming expense. We can’t thank you all enough. We continue to be very optimistic about my wife’s future, being under the care of the great doctors and staff offered by the cancer center, and by the fine support provided by the aptly-named Hope Lodge.” - James - Vestal, New York
“When I learned that I would have to find a place to stay in NYC for 28 days in order to participate in a clinical trial, it was devastating. I knew no one in NYC and had just learned that my health insurance was not going to cover the cost of the radiation part of the trial. These were huge obstacles to overcome and they almost forced me to cancel my trip. When we learned we could stay at Hope Lodge it was like a miracle. But I have to say that the relief of the financial burden has far been outweighed by the value of the care and support and kindness of the staff and fellow cancer patients.
If you have been a donor, please know that your generosity has made a positive difference in my life. If you are considering making a donation please know your contribution will be well spent. Thank you." - Pat - California
Residency at a Hope Lodge facility is a courtesy extended at the sole discretion of American Cancer Society. All individuals who meet the Hope Lodge eligibility requirements will be welcomed regardless of race, creed, citizenship, physical disability, gender, color, ethnic heritage, veteran status, economic status, or sexual orientation. For admissions information, please select a Hope Lodge location.