Breast Cancer + Domestic Abuse:
Sadly, we see too much of this combo in our Lemonade Fund grant applications. How does the Lemonade Fund handle situations in which an abusive spouse/partner completely controls the family bank account? The following is an example:
R., 48, is married with 2 children, 10 and 12. She worked in a supermarket stocking shelves until she was diagnosed with metastatic (Stage 4) breast cancer. (She can no longer work due to the side effects of her treatments.) Her husband, though partially disabled and unemployed, controls the household entirely, including all of the finances. He has forced estrangement from her family and friends, and R. is living in fear and isolation. She thinks her children need counseling but her husband will not permit it. The family has no income except for the minimal disability payments that they receive from the National Insurance Institute (Bituach Leumi.)
Despite his cruelty, R. is afraid to leave her domineering husband for fear of orphaning her children completely. For the time being she and her hospital social worker submitted an application for an emergency Lemonade Fund grant that will be deposited in a new separate bank account that R. opened on her own. (In special cases such as this, grant checks can either be sent to the recipient via the social worker, or wired directly to the recipient’s separate bank account.) In this way, R. will have a sum of money that is completely her own, to spend as she sees fit. Though her situation remains precarious, R. will have a modicum of control of her own life…a small step toward personal empowerment (and maybe more,) during a very difficult time.
To Donate to the ESRA Lemonade Fund: