BLOG: What a difference 15 years makes!

BLOG: What a difference 15 years makes!

Scrapbook pic

1.21.14 Here at the MOCA office, we keep our history right out in the open, with scrapbooks sitting in a conference room.

Thumb through those pages, and readers are transported back to 1999, when MOCA was first an idea in the minds of a handful of driven and inspired women, who were diagnosed with ovarian cancer and were stunned not only at the diagnosis but the lack of the support  and awareness about the disease in the community.

In those scrapbooks, you’ll find MOCA’s first newsletter. Our first flyer for a public support group about ovarian cancer, which attracted more than 30 women. You’ll even find the pieces of scrap paper where MOCA co-founder Molly Cade wrote down phone numbers of other women with ovarian cancer, as a small circle of women grew into a statewide movement to make a difference against this disease.

Since those early days, we’ve come so far because of all those who cared enough to get involved and try to make something meaningful out of their experience with this disease. Ovarian cancer survivors and their families and friends poured money, time, resources and love into this organization to help it grow into what it is today – a source of support for women going through the disease and a beacon of hope  for a better future.  We’ve provided support and education to thousands of women and families touched by this disease. We’ve brought about awareness about ovarian cancer to the medical community and the public. And we’ve provided more than $4 million in research to make a difference against ovarian cancer.

As we celebrate our 15th year anniversary this year, we’re gearing up to do even more. I’m excited to announce that we’ll be marking a MOCA milestone in 2014, as we’ll be providing a record $500,000 to ovarian cancer research this year! Here at MOCA, we firmly believe that with more research comes more hope.

Hope for an early detection test, better treatments and one day a cure for ovarian cancer. We’re just as committed to that mission today as we were when MOCA began 15 years ago. The recipients of those grant funds will be announced at our MOCA Annual Meeting in mid-May – which we plan to turn into a 15th anniversary celebration! We hope you make plans to join us for that.

Stay tuned to our Teal Together blog throughout the year, as we ask former volunteers, board members and more to share some of their MOCA memories. And be sure to follow MOCA on Facebook and Twitter, where we’ll be highlighting some of the scrapbook memories of our past in our #ThrowbackThursday posts.

And if you have your own MOCA memories, don’t hesitate to share them with us in the comments section or by sending a note to MOCA’s communications manager at rlechner@mnovarian.org to share your stories and photos.

Let’s make our 15th year our most successful year yet – and continue our work to make a difference against ovarian cancer.

Together in Teal,

Kathleen Gavin

MOCA Executive Director