Bosom Buddies give thanks to community

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CULLMAN, Ala. – Concluding its 10th year of serving the community, the Cullman County Bosom Buddies Foundation has provided more than $125,000 to 117 Cullman County cancer patients to aid with day-to-day expenses, which can be increasingly difficult to cover when undergoing treatment. The nonprofit agency provides financial assistance as needed for utilities, food, gas, rent/mortgage and more to help cover income that is often lost while in a cancer treatment program. 

Many of the Bosom Buddies clients learn of the program through their nurse navigator at Cullman Regional, who sends in a formal request once an application and supporting documentation is submitted. Once the information is reviewed and needs are determined, Bosom Buddies pays the client’s bills directly to the creditor on behalf of the Bosom Buddies Foundation. No cash is given. 

Bosom Buddies’ Judy Grissom is quick to thank the many individuals and organizations throughout the county who help Bosom Buddies help others. 

“We just couldn’t do what we do for our people without our supporters,” shared Grissom. “We have been so blessed to have the support of the community. Our organization is different in that we take care of our people locally in Cullman County. If someone is undergoing cancer treatment in Cullman or that lives in Cullman and they get their treatment somewhere else, we want to help them.” 

Grissom is the perfect woman to lead such a giving organization. When she tells a cancer patient she understands what they are going through, she means it. 

“In 2013 I started to open this shop and I called Mary (Dyer) and asked her if she felt like there was a need for a wig store in Cullman,” Grissom remembered. “And she said there absolutely was. My ribbon cutting was on May 1. The day before, Dr. Williamson called me and said my mammogram had to be repeated because they saw something. I went back the next week for a second mammogram. The next month I had a bilateral mastectomy done. I’m a survivor and it’s my passion now. It’s what I think about almost 24/7.” 

Donations are what make Bosom Buddies’ benevolence possible. This year, contributions from Bill Smith Buick GMC, the Cullman Firefighters Association, Senior Kickers at the Active Adult Center and Cullman Fire Rescue, in addition to monies from fundraisers such as the Little Pink Dress Benefit and Derby Day, allowed the agency to serve 30 residents of Cullman who are undergoing cancer treatment this year. 

A look at their books, which Bosom Buddies share openly and transparently, reflects a 20% drop in donations since last year, when 41 cancer patients were helped. The top three things for which funds were used this year were medical expenses, utilities and rent/mortgage. Despite the decline in funding this year, Bosom Buddies has grown leaps and bounds from its first year, when four patients were served with total funds of less than $1,500. 

In 2023, the Bosom Buddies will kick off an inaugural Gospel Music Jubilee featuring Living Faith Quartet at Northbrook Baptist Church on Friday, March 17. Doors will open at 5 p.m. and music will begin at 6. Tickets are $15 in advance or $20 at the door on the day of the event. Limited VIP and Parking tickets are $25. Tickets can be purchased in person at Options, 2201 Second Ave. NW, or Yates Chance Christian Bookstore, 1650 Second Ave. NW, online at www.cullmanbosombuddies.com or by calling 256-734-7730. Tickets are on sale now. All proceeds will benefit Bosom Buddies and the patients it serves. 

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