GREENVILLE — The Greenville Aktion Club has put together chemotherapy bags for cancer patients as a community project.
Aktion Club is a service and leadership club for adults with disabilities sponsored by the Kiwanis Club of Greenville in partnership with the Darke County Board of Developmental Disabilities (Darke DD).
Co-advisers of the club are Sue Huston, community connections coordinator, and Cheryl Pressly, resource coordinator, both with Darke DD.
Huston said it all started after she learned, through the newspaper about a local woman, Tiffany Beumer Kester, who in early 2016, announcing she wanted to do give chemo bags to Darke County area residents.
“I am constantly trying to partnership with people and groups in the community for projects to do, and when I saw that article, I approached Tiffany,” Huston recalled. “The chemo bags are donated through Tiffany, a Thirty-One consultant.”
The bags are filled with such items as magazines, afghans, adult coloring books, journals and pencils, lotions, lip balms, crossword puzzles, water bottles, hand sanitizers and certain candies [peppermint and lemon].
A woman from Indianapolis made 15 handmade hats to go into the bags and Aktion Club made blankets. Perfectly Posh, which offers skin care products through Kim Bohler, donated some lip balms.
And, every bag has a signed card from the Aktion Club.
“We do fundraisers to make money,” said Huston. “We donated $200 to purchase these items to put with the other items.”
The first one was delivered Wednesday afternoon.
“One of our members has a neighbor going through breast cancer,” said Huston. “We will be taking a bag out to her today.”
According to Huston, the club has 12 other bags that are done and ready to go.
“We are hoping to continue this with Tiffany,” she said. “We want it to be an ongoing project.”
She said Kester received a fair amount of donations for the bags and each bag can be acquired and bought in the memory of someone they know who has cancer.
“When they heard about the bags, Aktion Club overwhelmingly wanted to participate,” Huston said. “Some of our members work out in the community so sometimes scheduling is tricky.”
One of the Aktion Club members, Paula Laney, remarked, “I have family who died from cancer. My cousin died. This means a lot to me.”
Huston also noted that she has contacted Dayton Physicians Group at its offices in Greenville and told them about the chemo bag project.
“They were every excited,” said Huston “As people come in for treatments, they will present them with a bag.”
“I started it because I personally saw what cancer does to a person and their family,” said Kester. “When a friend’s husband was diagnosed with lung cancer, it gave me the idea to start something. I was in Girl Scouts for 13 years and in 4-H for nine years along with numerous other groups. I have missed out not doing community activities. This was a way for me to help people.”
“Tiffany is looking for sponsors on the bags,” Huston said. “It is a really good partnership. Tiffany said she feels like it is in good hands. She’s busy and pleased with having made it come to fruition.” We’re pleased with the quality of things we get in donations.”
Monetary and other donations will be accepted at Darke DD, 5844 Jaysville-St. Johns Road, or by calling Huston at 459-4629, or Pressly at 459-4627. Those wanting more information may check out Facebook: Sponsor Chemo Care Bags with Tiffany Kester.
More about the Aktion Club and its other projects will be appearing in an upcoming edition of The Daily Advocate.
This writer may be reached at 937-569-4315. Follow her on Facebook and join the conversation and get updates on Facebook by searching Darke County Sports or Advocate 360. For more features online go to dailyadvocate.com.