About Alissa's Hope
Alissa Nicks was diagnosed with Triple Negative Breast Cancer at the age of 17. There had been no family history of breast cancer and she did not carry the BRCA gene. Because Alissa was considered a "special case" for being diagnosed with breast cancer at such a young age, another "special case" breast cancer survivor, Gwen, reached out to her and offered her support. Over the years Gwen became a friend and mentor to Alissa. Gwen was a true inspiration. She was a patient advocate with Siteman Cancer Center and was pivotal in helping to bring the Race for the Cure to St. Louis. Gwen would also go into the community and preach the importance of self exams and getting yearly mammograms. In 2008 Gwen passed away from her 7th occurrence of cancer. The world had lost an amazing person and Alissa decided that the best way to honor her friend's memory was to carry on the work that she did to help other survivors in the community. Alissa's Hope was started as a team in a local walk. With the help of some great friends and their families, Alissa and her friends started doing small fundraisers to help raise money for different cancer charities.
In 2010 a friend challenged the group to raise $10,000 in honor of Alissa's 10th year in remission. That year they raised almost $20,000! In 2013 Alissa's Hope became a 501c3 nonprofit organization.
Alissa's Hope is currently raising money to distribute grants to local programs and hospitals that support cancer patients in the St. Louis area. Alissa's Hope prides itself on making personal connections at our local hospitals to find out their needs and to discover what is being underfunded. Alissa's Hope also holds a fleece blanket and toy drive in the winter for kids who have to spend the holidays in the hospital.