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Trees of Hope and MOCA: Meet and Greet

Updated: December 08, 2019 10:38 PM

From the outside, they look like any group of girlfriends, enjoying tea At Sara's Table. But these women have a unique bond. They have all been touched by ovarian cancer.

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"We did have some new survivors tonight. And it's really great that we can connect with them and share what we have to offer," explained Stefanie Gliniany, the Community Support and Program Manager for MOCA, the Minnesota Ovarian Cancer Alliance.

The Meet and Greets give them a chance to swap stories and experiences. They can offer encouragement and empathy and advice. For Tara Wain, it's a chance to remember her mother, Patricia.

"It was a 22-month cancer journey. She passed away in July of 2015," Wain told us. 

Patricia had irritable bowel syndrome. She thought her symptoms were just a part of that condition. By the time she was diagnosed, it was advanced. Wain took care of her. And the two started to become part of the MOCA movement. "She's like, you need to get involved. There are groups that are helping make a difference. We need a test. We need better detection, we need better treatment," Wain remembers.

MOCA is working on all of those fronts. But home is really where their heart is. They have a wide range of options for young survivors, spouses, and daughters. Mentors are available. Care Kits go out to the newly diagnosed survivors. And MOCA's presence is growing in the Northland.

"We are trying to expand our reach in the Northland. We like to hold these Meet and Greets, so people can connect," Gliniany added.

Caregivers like Wain are also a critical part of the journey. They can carry on the legacy of loved ones. "I can relate to so many things. Not because I went through it. But because I helped my mother through it. My wish is to see more women not see the same end result as my mother did."

MOCA is our latest partner in the Trees of Hope Campaign with HOM Furniture.

For more information about MOCA:

https://mnovarian.org/

And you can donate during our phone banks coming up on Monday, at 5, 6, and 10pm!

Copyright 2019 WDIO-TV LLC, a Hubbard Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved

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