May 18, 2024
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Hundreds Support Cancer Patients At RCCS’s Summer-Event Series

(Courtesy of RCCS) Rofeh Cholim Cancer Society (RCCS) hosted three separate fundraising events over the summer, two in Teaneck and one in Englewood, designed to introduce people to the unique services that are being offered to Jewish cancer patients in Bergen County and the surrounding areas.

In mid-July, RCCS board members and their wives, A.J. and Leah Schreiber and Gerry and Meira Adest, invited 80 guests to enjoy “The GrillFather BBQ Experience” at the home of RCCS long-time partners Kenny and Naomi Schiff. Rabbi Dovid Cofnas, regional director for RCCS, told the crowd that RCCS takes a fundamentally different and very practical approach to helping cancer patients. “When a patient asks for help, the question that we are always asking ourselves is, ‘How can we give this patient the best possible chance of recovery and survival?’ So towards that goal, we offer primarily medical and financial support because that’s how, with God’s help, we’re going to save lives.”

A few days before Rosh Hashanah, RCCS supporters Bobby and Shari Alter and their large committee welcomed close to 150 people to the Alters’ spacious backyard in Englewood. The “GrillFather,” a.k.a. Motty Samet from Monsey, New York, was a great hit again among the guests, serving extra-large cowboy steaks, lamb roasts and meat pizzas as well as many creative side dishes and desserts. Host Shari Alter spoke first, welcoming everyone, followed by cancer patient Mali Baer, who described eloquently the challenges she faced recently and how RCCS helped her to get through this most difficult period in her life. Ivri Amar, owner of Velvet Box Jewels and also a former patient of RCCS, surprised the many guests by announcing that he was donating a ruby and pink sapphire tennis bracelet worth $2,700 for a raffle prize, as an incentive to encourage people to donate more to RCCS.

Then exactly one week before Yom Kippur, RCCS friends and partners Adam and Bassie Lewis, Shira Mirkhani and Avi and Rebekah Mally brought approximately 120 friends to the tent at Keter Torah Synagogue to enjoy gourmet pizza by Aqua e Grano and specialty sushi, pastas and salads by Executive Caterers. Adam Lewis described his long history of investing in the critical work of RCCS and encouraged the large crowd to do whatever they could to help, while RCCS patient Manny Levy spoke emotionally about his painful journey with stage 3 prostate cancer and how RCCS has been helping him every step of the way. Rabbi Cofnas explained to the audience that besides offering personalized and expedited referrals to top-level specialists and help with insurance issues, RCCS is the only organization that pays for the full cost of the medical insurance for patients that are struggling financially. “Very often, the patients we are helping are too ill to work, and sometimes their spouses have to give up work to look after them. Because of that, many of them can’t afford their medical insurance premiums” he said. “RCCS takes upon itself to pay these immense costs so that our patients can focus on getting better and don’t need to worry about where their next payment is coming from. The $10,000 to $35,000 that each plan costs us will often pay out hundreds of thousands of dollars in medical bills if not more, so it’s a leveraged investment that is well worth it. In fact, last year, the money we paid out facilitated over $72 million in total medical care for our patients.”

Over the past year, RCCS helped 99 cancer patients in North Jersey by providing them with access to the best medical care available, and the three separate events over the summer raised substantial funding that went to cover the annual insurance premiums of 14 additional local patients.

Everyone who attended left inspired, feeling that they had participated in a very meaningful evening and a much-needed and unique life-saving charity.

For more information, or to make a donation, please contact Regional Director Dovid Cofnas at 201-575-9080 or [email protected] or visit www.rccscancer.org.

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