Susan G. Komen® Michigan Grants $552,665 to Local Breast Health Programs

Media Contact:
Courtney Sorman
616-752-8262 x2010

Komen Michigan fully funds this year’s grant slate for the second year in a row to provide breast health education, screening & diagnostic services, and survivorship programs.

GRAND RAPIDS, MI – April 11, 2016 – The Michigan Affiliate of Susan G. Komen announced today that for the second year in a row, the affiliate will be fully funding the entire community breast health program grant slate and meeting the stated needs of each of their three service areas: West, Southwest and Mid-Michigan. The programs cover many phases of the breast cancer continuum of care including breast health education, screening and diagnostic services, and survivorship.

To meet the needs of the 20-county service area they cover, Komen Michigan annually publishes a Request for Applications based on the priorities identified in the Community Profile needs assessment.

In 2015, Komen Michigan identified the following as priorities for funding:

  • Priority One: Screening Access. Increase access to breast cancer screening and diagnostics by reducing financial, individual, and other barriers to timely and complete access to the Continuum of Care without duplicating services covered by existing programs like Breast and Cervical Cancer Control and Navigation Program and Healthy Michigan Plan. Priority populations include (in no particular order): low-income, uninsured and underinsured, African American, Hispanic/Latino, rural, high-risk women under 40 years old.
  • Priority Two: Culturally Appropriate Education and Community Navigation. Support strong community education, outreach, and community navigation programs focused on dispelling myths, reducing fears, and providing support services related to breast cancer, including navigation and barrier-reduction programs (e.g. co-pays, deductibles, transportation, child care etc.) to connect clients to screening services. Priority populations include (in no particular order): African American, Hispanic/Latino, rural.
  • Priority Three: Survivorship Programs. Increase availability of programs serving survivors with a focus on social and emotional wellbeing, wellness programs, and lifestyle intervention strategies.

Komen Michigan’s funding model focuses on filling gaps in services. While there are some breast health programs that cover an individual’s need for breast health services, such as the Affordable Care Act (ACA), the Healthy Michigan Plan (HMP), and the Breast and Cervical Cancer Control and Navigation Programs (BCCCNP), there are still many men and women who do not qualify for those programs or who still cannot afford life-saving services due to high deductibles and copays. Similarly, many women now have access to screening, but may not know why annual mammograms are important or how to connect to services.

Women need support accessing the care they need and Komen-funded programs help fill those needs. “Because there are so many great programs in our communities, Komen Michigan is able to be a ‘gap-filling’ organization,” explained Jennifer Jurgens, Komen Michigan Executive Director and breast cancer survivor. “We have developed partnerships with local hospitals, clinics and organizations on the front line to ensure we aren’t duplicating services. Where other programs fall short, Komen steps in to get men and women the services that they need.”

Komen Michigan’s volunteer Grant Review Committee then reviews applications in light of funding priorities to determine which programs best serve the needs of the community in rank order. Komen Michigan then funds as many programs as possible with the proceeds from fundraising efforts like Race for the Cure, Ride for the Cure and community events.

“When you Race for the Cure, everyone wins,” added Chuck Christmas, Komen Michigan Board President. “Seventy-five percent of our net proceeds fund these local, life-saving breast health programs and the remaining twenty-five percent funds ground-breaking research to find cures to stop this awful disease. With your passion and dedication we can end breast cancer forever.”

Grantees for the 2016-2017 fiscal year include:

Absenger Cancer Education Foundation – The Living Well in Breast Cancer Survivorship (LWBCS) program offers evidence-based yoga & meditation classes, music therapy, a mindful eating program, and survivorship care plan (SCP) counseling. The LWBCS program addresses the psychosocial needs of survivors in Muskegon County. Komen funds will provide breast cancer survivors with free access to the LWBCS program for one year. Stressful life experiences are associated with inferior survival and higher mortality in breast cancer survivors; psychosocial interventions, on the other hand, have been shown to meet the stress-related aspects of cancer survivorship. Psychosocial interventions rely, in part on self-management theory, which explains how we cope with and adapt to stressful situations, such as cancer diagnosis.  Ask for the Living Well in Breast Cancer Survivorship Program, 616.607.7360

Allegiance Health, Women’s Health Center – The Project, “The Importance of One: One Woman, One Clinical Breast Exam, One Mammogram” will provide 50 breast exams/screenings and 60 diagnostic procedures to uninsured, underinsured, and low-income women ages 40-64. Women at or below the 350% poverty level will receive payment assistance for deductibles, co-insurance, and co-payments for diagnostic services. Outcomes include breast health education, screening/diagnostic accessibility, and referrals for breast cancer. Ask for the Komen Mammograms Program, 517.768.4377

Cancer Support Community of Greater Ann Arbor – The Cancer Support Community (CSC) of Greater Ann Arbor’s proposed program, “Breast Cancer Support through the Continuum of Care” aligns directly with Komen Michigan’s priority #3: Increase availability of programs serving survivors with a focus on social and emotional well-being, wellness programs, and lifestyle intervention strategies. This program specifically is a continuation of psychosocial support through the phases of breast cancer survivorship and will include healthy lifestyle through nutrition education. Their “Moving Beyond Breast Cancer” program will provide supportive services, education and exercise to at least 10 women facing the challenges of life after cancer. Lastly, “Cooking for Wellness: Focus on Breast Cancer” nutrition classes will be held quarterly for women and their loved ones across the continuum of care. Contact Rosie Morrison, 734.975.2500

Catherine’s Health Center – Catherine’s Health Center’s Count Me In program helps low income women receive breast health education and services. They educate individuals on breast health, assist them with free or low cost breast services, provide clinical breast exams (CBEs) and mammograms, help those with abnormal screening to access follow up in a timely manner, and provide reminders for annual exams. In the clinic and community, one-on-one and in groups, they reach women who may be underserved due to low income, knowledge deficits or ethnic and social barriers. They also inform women about coverage under the ACA, assist with eligibility and enrollment, and help with financial assistance for services not covered by their health plan. Ask for the Komen Program, 616.336.8800

City on a Hill Health Clinic – This program provides physical exams and mammograms to uninsured women through a monthly clinic staffed by volunteer providers. The program will assist women who lack other resources for receiving this care and includes all races and urban and rural residents of Ottawa and Allegan Counties. Continued collaboration with the local health department and other community agencies also expands the reach of this program. Women with suspicious findings are referred to appropriate resources for further testing and treatment. Ask for the Komen Program, 616.748.6009

Gilda’s Club Grand Rapids – The purpose of the Gilda’s Club Grand Rapids (GCGR) breast health program is to address and reduce cultural and socioeconomic disparities by removing barriers and empowering underserved women to take an active role in their breast health. Key activities include individual and group support meetings, assistance with access to medical appointments and mammograms, non-medical home visits, health and nutrition seminars, art and fitness workshops, and other emotional and social support. All program elements are provided at no cost to participants. Contact Jan Miller, 616.453.8300 ext. 106

Grass Lake Sanctuary – This program serves low-income, underserved women breast cancer survivors in the Southeast Michigan service area between the ages of 25 and 80. The program addresses the sense of isolation and disconnect that can follow medical treatment by cultivating a deep sense of connection and belonging among program participants. Survivors benefit from the health and longevity impacts of connecting to others, getting outdoors, eating better and exercising more often, and therapeutic massage. By reconnecting with themselves and others, their bodies and the natural environment, we increase quality of support, increase breast health, and reduce cancer risk. Participants start with a 3-Day Immersion Retreat as a gateway into an ongoing quality community support system for breast health and risk reduction. The community engages in ongoing actions that improve breast health and reduce risk throughout their entire communities in SE Michigan. Ask for Grass Lake Sanctuary Survivor Retreats, 734.726.0290

Hackley Community Care – The purpose of the Hackley Community Care program is to offer education, screening and diagnostic services to low income women in Muskegon. Key activities include: screening and diagnostic mammograms and/or MRI’s, high risk assessments at the Comprehensive Breast Center, and education for women. Contact Teresa Jones, 231.733.6614

Holland Hospital – We estimate that approximately 1/3 of the uninsured and underinsured women in Ottawa County do not schedule diagnostic/screening breast care services because of financial barriers. Holland Hospital is actively raising funds in order to remove those financial barriers and create greater access to breast screening and diagnostic services. Their goal is to reach women in Ottawa County to screen for evidence of breast cancer. They have three community-based sites that qualify patients for breast health screening: City on a Hill (BCCCNP site), Holland Community Health Center, and InterCare. Each site reviews the patient’s needs, assesses their financial status and eligibility for BCCCNP, HMP, Medicaid or other funding, and determines the best pathway. Contact Colleen Perdok, 616.355.3975

Kalamazoo County Health and Community Services Department – Southwest Michigan Breast & Cervical Cancer Control Navigation Program (BCCCNP) Wrap Around will target services to women under age 40 and adult men in need of breast screening or diagnostic services.  More generally, Wrap Around will serve low-income, uninsured and under-insured individuals.  Patient navigation services will be available to help customers locate and access breast screening and/or diagnostic services.  BCCCNP will secure Spanish translation services to provide culturally appropriate education to members of the Hispanic community. Ask for the Komen Program, 269.373.5213

Lakeland Health Foundations – Lakeland Health will focus on reducing late stage diagnosis and breast cancer mortality of African American/Black and medically under-served men and women in southwestern Michigan. They will provide free screening and diagnostic mammograms, transportation assistance, and breast health education for the identified targeted populations in the Lakeland Health service area, and offer Survivorship Supportive services in Berrien, Cass and Van Buren counties. Contact Shelley Wilkinson, 269.556.2866

Michigan State University College of Nursing – Michigan State University’s (MSU) screening and diagnostic program will serve breast cancer survivors and their families; underinsured, and underserved women in need of breast care services. Patients come to the MSU Nurse Practitioner Clinic with needs for mammography screening or breast concerns. Patients will receive education, clinical evaluation, and diagnostic services as needed. They will also provide a yearly multi-component survivorship series to address concerns of breast cancer survivors including topics such as exercise and nutrition for wellness, lymphedema management, psychosocial support, and medical management information. The grant is innovative in providing care to the Mid-Michigan area for both underserved patients with needs for screening and diagnostic services and to meet the needs of breast cancer survivors. Contact Kim Anderson, 517.267.2460

Spectrum Health Foundation – Spectrum Health will 1)  increase access to screening/diagnostic services by reducing barriers to access – socio-economic, language, cultural or fear of navigating a complex system;  2) provide culturally appropriate patient education, & community navigation;  3) improve planning, coordination & accountability of outreach & breast care services; and, 4) provide survivorship services emphasizing social and emotional well being, and life style interventions for prevention. Contact Denise McCarty, 616.486.6022

YMCA of Metropolitan Lansing The YMCA Turning Point Program is a healthy lifestyle initiative which targets at-risk breast cancer patients and survivors providing them with physical, social and emotional health and support to reduce the side effects of treatment, provide support in remission and to improve their long-term quality of life. Each program uses the same curriculum and nutrition models which focus on 47 weeks of fitness, yoga and nutritional coursework centered around 3 days of fitness activities. Activities focus on stress reduction, physical functioning, nutritional support and social engagement in a supportive environment under the guidance of trained instructors. Contact Joy Berwald, 517.827.9677
Individuals that have questions about breast health or need help accessing services can direct their inquiries to Komen Michigan at 616-752-826 or


About Susan G. Komen Michigan

Komen Michigan is an independent, local non-profit organization that is dedicated to combating breast cancer. 75 percent of the organization’s net proceeds go towards programs and funding grants to local hospitals and community organizations that provide breast health education, screenings, diagnostics and survivorship programs for underserved men and women in Michigan.

The remaining 25 percent of net proceeds funds global, leading-edge research focused on the prevention of, and cures for, breast cancer. Komen Michigan’s mission is to save lives and end breast cancer forever by empowering people, ensuring quality of care for all, and energizing science to find the cures. For more information call 616-752-8262 or visit

About Susan G. Komen®

Susan G. Komen is the world’s largest breast cancer organization, funding more breast cancer research than any other nonprofit while providing real-time help to those facing the disease. Since its founding in 1982, Komen has funded more than $889 million in research and provided $1.95 billion in funding to screening, education, treatment and psychosocial support programs serving millions of people in more than 30 countries worldwide. Komen was founded by Nancy G. Brinker, who promised her sister, Susan G. Komen, that she would end the disease that claimed Suzy’s life. Visit or call 1-877 GO KOMEN. Connect with us on social at