TMSG: Lansing club brings comfort to breast cancer patients

Local News

LANSING, MICH. (WLNS) — A group from Lansing has been working for the past month to make 100 customs pillows. These pillow will benefit Sparrow Hospital’s breast cancer patients during one of the toughest parts of their journey.

Sparrow Radiation Oncologist James Herman said, “patients appreciate everything you do for them, but with a token of this kind, it’s almost like a personal gift from one women to another.”

The Zonta Club of the Michigan Capitol Area has partnered with Sparrow Hospital’s Herbert-Herman center. It’s a bond that has brought custom pillows to patients for almost a decade.

Zonta club member DeAnna Cambridge said, “for women that have mastectomy or anything other type of surgical procedure where they may bump the site.”

Thanks to their hard work, they’re helping to ease some discomfort.

“They’re actually called comfort pillows for that reason,” Cambridge said. “We want to provide comfort and let them know that we’re along with them to healing.”

Herman said, “The design of the pillow is to take off pressure on the breast and so they can function much easier and more comfortably.”

This can make all the difference in the world.

“I was in the parking lot delivering them and a woman came out and asked if these were the pillows and started crying and thanked me for our club and the work we’ve done,” Cambridge said.

Even though they’re a small club, starting in September they were able to make 100 pillows.

Herman said, “The women are able to supply them so we don’t have to sew.”

They’ve had volunteers of all ages, including 90-year-old Gladys Beckwith.

“oh my,” Beckwith said, “I hadn’t realized just how many there were, I’m kind of overwhelmed.”

She said she loved how this project not only brings women together, but also helps raise awareness.

“I know there are many women who have had it and we never know when we could be stricken with it,” Beckwith said.

She said this was a wonderful project that was very rewarding.

The pillows go pretty quickly since the Herbert-Herman Center sees about 2,000 patients a year.

“We have a good supply right now,” said Herman. “But three, six months from now they’ll be dwindling down.”

Cambridge said, “We receive request pretty often because they run out of them quickly.”

Because of this need, the women of the the Zonta Club don’t see this project coming to an end any time soon.

Cambridge said, “To be able to partner with Sparrow and to provide these pillows is an extraordinary experience for our club members too, that we are with our hands making a difference that touched someone’s heart in a great way.”

“It gives me a chance to sort of bond with them and that kind of bond is very important,” said Herman.

The club said they are always willing to make more pillows for the women who need them. In order to do so, they would need more resources including donation.

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