Angels Among Us
Imerman Angels was founded so that no one will ever have to fight cancer alone.
by Philip Chang
At age 26, Jonny Imerman was diagnosed with testicular cancer. After several rounds of treatment and the loving support of family and friends, Jonny has been cancer free since 2003. During his healing, he noticed how many people fought cancer alone, without the support of family and friends.
Jonny envisioned that cancer survivors could be “angels” to those fighting the battle – providing walking, living proof that a cancer fighter can win, too.
Today, Imerman Angels connects a person fighting cancer with someone who has beaten that same type of cancer, completely free of charge. This one-on-one, mentor-type relationship is provided to anyone needing support during his or her battle with cancer, anywhere across the country and worldwide.
Jonny envisioned that cancer survivors could be living proof that a cancer fighter can win, too.
“By 2013, our goal is to connect any cancer fighter in the world with a survivor within 24 hours,” says founder Jonny Imerman. The pairings are made according to age, sex, location, marital status (married, single, children), and type of cancer.
Imerman Angels also connects caregivers, who are paired in two different ways: either they are connected with another caregiver, or they are put in touch with a survivor. This enables caregivers to vent their concerns and speak with a survivor who can tell them exactly what their loved one is facing.
The kind of support Imerman Angels provides is different from what a cancer fighter can receive from family members or physicians because it comes from someone who has been through the process. It’s also what makes this service so valuable to people living with cancer.
“Absolutely no one, except someone who has gone through exactly what I’ve gone through and survived, could have helped me fortify my resolve to live in the powerful way my angel did,” says Katie Blossfield Iannitelli, a breast cancer survivor.
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For more information about Imerman Angels, visit ImermanAngels.org. If you would like to be connected with an angel, call toll-free (877) 274-5529.
This article was originally published in Coping® with Cancer magazine, September/October 2009.