Mother’s Day means something different to each of us, and here at United Breast Cancer Foundation, we wish all moms a very happy Mothers Day. Being a Mother is a title not simply reserved for women who give birth. Moms come in all sorts of packages – and our love and respect are extended to all. Most importantly, we acknowledge and are thankful for all of the love and support that moms give despite a breast cancer diagnosis.
UBCF’s Executive Director, Ms. Stephanie Mastroianni, leads the organization in honor of her mother, Audrey B. Mastroianni. After a valiant fight, Audrey passed away from breast cancer in her early forties – far too young.
Today UBCF has various programs which support mothers and children. Not only does UBCF provide Individual Grants, but also Child Sponsorship grants and the Audrey B. Mastroianni College Scholarship. Joseph, a college scholarship recipient, experienced his mother’s stage three breast cancer diagnosis.
“In 2008, when I was around five years old, my mother was diagnosed with stage three breast cancer… Not only did this take a physical and emotional toll on her, but also took a huge emotional toll on everyone close to her. My immediate family was especially affected by the situation. We struggled to pay for bills, food and other expenses. Thankfully, some people were willing to help us pay bills, cook food and provide us basic needs like helping us clean the house.
Of course, being so young, I didn’t fully comprehend the severity of our situation. My focus was on mom. Why was I being forced to keep away from her loving embrace while she underwent chemo? Being an only child, she was my world. It was the single hardest obstacle to overcome. Now understanding the severity of the situation, I am extremely grateful that my mom was so brave to defeat cancer.”
When finally applying for student loans, Joseph sought out UBCF. “We were still left with a deficit in my college account due to the years of not being able to add money to the account. I reached out to multiple Foundations for help, luckily receiving the help from UBCF. With the scholarship from UBCF, I was able to take out less student loans…making it possible to leave college with no student debt. I am extremely grateful for the help UBCF has been generous enough to award me with. With some help and hard work, I will be able to pay off college without allowing it to be a financial burden to me.”
UBCF recognizes the hard work of ALL mothers! While Mother’s Day may be bittersweet following a breast cancer diagnosis, we thank you for everything that you do and we are here for you