The 40th annual fundraiser to support cancer patients at Atrium Health Wake Forest Baptist’s NCI-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center will be held Saturday, May 20 at Bailey Park in Innovation Quarter.
SummerLark will feature a concert by country singer Chris Lane, a Kernersville native. Food trucks and local breweries and wineries will serve guests at the event. Tickets are now on sale and can be purchased at giving.wakehealth.edu/get-involved/summerlark.
Over the last four decades, the event has raised more than $6 million for Wake Forest Baptist’s Cancer Patient Support Program.
“The Cancer Patient Support Program wouldn’t be able to benefit those who need it most without the support from our community,” said Dr. Ruben Mesa, president of Atrium Health’s cancer service line, executive director of Atrium Health Wake Forest Baptist’s Comprehensive Cancer Center and vice dean for cancer programs at Wake Forest University School of Medicine. “Cancer casts such a heavy burden but with the outreach and dedicated care this program provides, these patients don’t have to battle their journey alone.”
The Cancer Patient Support Program provides counseling, patient education, support groups and other services free of charge to more than 35,000 patients and families each year at the Cancer Center. The program, which began in 1980, has been widely recognized as a best practices model for cancer centers nationwide.
“Our team is not only there to treat our patients throughout the journey of a cancer diagnosis, but to also offer support,” said Katie Duckworth, associate professor of hematology and oncology at Wake Forest Baptist and director of the program. “By supporting our program, you are touching thousands of lives that have been impacted by cancer.”
The funds raised through the event provide 50% of the program’s annual operating budget. Organizers hope to raise more than $300,000 through this year.
“The generosity of this community makes the services of the Cancer Patient Support Program possible for our patients,” said Lisa Marshall, Wake Forest Baptist’s chief philanthropy officer and vice president of philanthropy and alumni relations. “We are grateful for the support of partners to ensure no one faces cancer alone.”
Allegacy Federal Credit Union, a longtime supporter and active sponsor of the event is the presenting sponsor for the fourth straight year. Ashley Kohlrus and Annette Knight are this year’s co-chairs.
More information about SummerLark can be found at giving.wakehealth.edu/summerlark.