WALKING FOR A CURE: Monica’s Hope Cancer Awareness Walk is Saturday

Published 2:00 pm Friday, September 30, 2022

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NATCHEZ — Breast Cancer Awareness month begins this Saturday with the Monica’s Hope Cancer Awareness Walk, which is a fundraiser to help those diagnosed in the Miss-Lou region.

Monica Hickombottom Smith, a cancer survivor, founded Monica’s Hope in 2014.

“I started it back in 2014 during my bout with breast cancer,” she said. “I wanted to start the organization so that we could fundraise and help other individuals locally, whether it’s with travel expenses or copay, words of encouragement, taking them to and from their appointments or whatever they need. Something to lighten their fight.”

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Since then, Monica’s Hope has helped approximately 150 people with cancer and their loved ones, she said.

The cancer walk hosted each year on the first Saturday in October and an All-White Affair dress-up party are the foundation’s two largest fundraisers.

Registration for the eighth-annual walk begins at 8 a.m. by the Natchez bluff bandstand.

The cost is $10 per person, free to children, and all proceeds support locals who are fighting cancer, she said.

Three other Natchez cancer survivors, not just breast cancer, will kick things off by sharing their testimonies, Smith said. Natchez High School cheerleaders will help get participants in the walking spirit while refreshments are provided by vendors.

“I invite the City of Natchez, business, organizations and the general public to come out and participate because everyone is touched by cancer at some point or another,” Smith said. “It affects us all, whether it’s you, a friend, a co-worker or someone you know in the community.”

Those diagnosed with cancer who need assistance can reach out directly to Smith at 601-443-7998. For more information, or to donate online, visit monicashope601.site123.me.

Check to Monica’s Hope can be mailed to 179 Morgantown Road Natchez, Miss 39120. Monica’s Hope is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization and all donations are tax-deductible, Smith said.