Mary Bird Perkins – Our Lady of the Lake Cancer Center launched the Helping Hands online registry. The website allows cancer patients to invite friends and family members to help with essential non-medical related tasks such as providing transportation to and from treatment, mowing the lawn, taking the dog for a walk, grocery shopping – important tasks individuals may have difficulty accomplishing due to receiving cancer care. In essence, the registry allows patients to create and post an online “wish list” of tasks they need fulfilled, and invite people they know to sign up to offer support.
The Helping Hands registry is a product of a generous donation from Mary Bird Perkins Cancer Center Board Chair and Philanthropist Art Favre. In 2016, Favre presented a $1 million gift. A portion of the donation established the Favre Family Award for Innovation through Mary Bird Perkins Cancer Foundation to help the Cancer Center pioneer even more innovative and creative solutions to benefit the thousands of patients served throughout the Gulf South region.
“Innovation helps push the boundaries of what we know about cancer and how the disease is treated,” said Favre. “We are fortunate to have some of the best cancer experts in the country right here at Mary Bird Perkins-Our Lady of the Cancer Center. I knew this was an investment that would have tremendous reach and power, and the Helping Hands registry is a prime example of conquering cancer differently through a unique approach.”
The Helping Hands registry allows patients receiving cancer care to utilize the service for free. Patients can sign up at helpinghandsmbp.com.
Todd Stevens, president and chief executive officer, Mary Bird Perkins Cancer Center, stated that the award was developed as an internal competition where team members and physicians submit their most innovative ideas and a committee of peers choose the project with the most promise and impact. The winning entry receives a Favre Family Award for Innovation grant to bring the idea to life.
“Projects in the past have ranged from helping ensure head and neck cancer patients stay nutritionally sound during treatment to developing technology for enhancing lung cancer radiation treatments, as well as other initiatives to improve survivorship and lessen the burden of cancer for patients,” said Stevens.
He noted that the Helping Hands registry was submitted by Mary Bird Perkins’ cancer navigation and marketing departments.
“In this COVID-19 era, this project is especially timely,” said Stevens. “People who typically help their loved ones with tasks may be ill or immunocompromised themselves and unable to assist as usual. Helping Hands gives patients access to more resources. I want to thank Mr. Favre and the navigation and marketing departments for creating this new tool that will go a long way toward impacting the quality of life for many patients, which in turn provides for a better outcome.”