Tag Archives: breast cancer emergency financial relief

לימונדה ישראל

Profiles in Courage – July 2018

When both spouses have cancer… Y., a 50 year old secretary from Haifa, is married with two adult children. Her husband, a machine operator, is currently being treated for lymphoma. In the midst of taking care of him, Y. was diagnosed with breast cancer and now, she, too, is getting chemotherapy. Though their children pitch in, they are having a hard time making ends meet. The Lemonade Fund, an emergency breast cancer financial relief fund, created for just such situations, has awarded them a grant to help them get through this difficult time.

Diagnosed with breast cancer while pregnant… E., a 27 year old immigrant from Mexico discovered a lump while pregnant with her second child. She is now getting chemotherapy even while pregnant. Her husband works as an office cleaner, but he is overwhelmed with the duties of caring for his toddler and his wife at the same time. The Lemonade Fund sent this young family a grant to help them with day to day costs as well as to hire some extra help and we wish E. an easy delivery and a speedy recovery.

To Donate to the Lemonade Fund:



Profiles in Courage – June 2016

We at the Lemonade Fund often see how cancer can devastate a family financially in no time. E., a 73 year old Russian immigrant, lives with her unmarried daughter in a small apartment in a development town in the south. Until E. was diagnosed with Stage 4 breast cancer, the salary from the daughter’s factory job supported the two women. Subsequently, E.’s daughter lost so much time from work caring for her mother, accompanying her to doctor appointments and treatments, that the family slid into financial crisis. Despite assistance from Bituach Leumi, (National Health Insurance,) eviction was a possibility. The Lemonade Fund awarded E. a generous grant, and E. and her daughter can breathe again and turn their focus back to E. and her health. We are, as ever, grateful to all of our donors, who help us make this kind of assistance possible.

To donate: https://lemonadefund.org/to-donate/

Profiles in Courage – May 2016

M. and her husband, a gentle couple in their mid-sixties, recently made aliyah from South America. Despite their limited Hebrew, they found jobs and were doing well. Within the last year, M.’s husband was laid off from his job and M. discovered a lump and was diagnosed with breast cancer. Due to the side effects of chemotherapy, M. cannot work and the couple is now living solely on M.’s husband’s unemployment benefits. They’ve slid from solvency to financial crisis and they are feeling desperate. The Lemonade Fund was created for just such situations – and a Lemonade Fund grant was awarded to help tide them over and alleviate M.’s financial stress so she can focus on getting well.

H. has had a hard life by any standards. Yet she is proud and not accustomed to asking for help. She is a widow, living alone in the center of the country, suffering from mental illness and now breast cancer. She was orphaned at the age of 5 and was subsequently raised by various adults who mistreated her. When she was 29, her husband was killed in a car accident, leaving her to raise her two young children alone. She continued to work and support herself even after a diagnosis of schizophrenia. She has helped her daughter, who was also diagnosed with cancer, as a young mother. H. lives in a dilapidated flat without an elevator and is now quite ill from her treatments. She needs help with shopping, cooking and cleaning while she is so weak, but she has no extra money. Her social worker urged her to apply to the Lemonade Fund, and we were happy to award H. a grant to pay for some extra help. We wish H. (and her daughter,) a full recovery.

To donate to the Lemonade Fund: https://lemonadefund.org/to-donate/

Thank you.


Lemonade for the New Year

The Lemonade Fund just passed the 3 year mark!

To date, 259,000 shekels in grants have been given to Israeli breast cancer patients, 113 women and 1 man, who are in financial crisis due to the their illness. 

One of our most recent grants went to H., a 57 year old woman from central Israel who was recently diagnosed with advanced breast cancer. Having survived thyroid cancer a year earlier, H. had just returned to her job as a caretaker at a nursing home. During the same period, her husband was forced to declare bankruptcy. H. is currently going through chemotherapy treatment and is also, understandably, suffering from anxiety and depression. H. and her husband have no source of income during this difficult time and we received an application on her behalf from her hospital social worker. The grant was delivered in time for the holiday season and we wish H. well. (With your donations, we can help patients like H. For more profiles, see, http://www.lemonadefund.org/profiles.)

During this time of year, we are focused on capturing God’s ear. The sound of the shofar is an ancient call, like a cry, without words. It is worth mentioning the simplest, most heart-felt prayer ever recorded. Five words, cried out by Moses, when his sister became ill. “Kayl, na, refa na lah.” “Please God, please heal her.”

The raw nakedness of this request to God can teach us much about prayer. At it’s most powerful, it is direct and straight from the heart. Yom Kippur can be a time of deep introspection when this kind of connection is possible.

We can also see how a serious illness shakes man to his core. On Yom Kippur, when most of us are praying earnestly for an upcoming year of blessings, very sick people beseech God for survival and recovery. I remember the first Yom Kippur after diagnosis as being one of intense gratitude as well as a humble new understanding of exactly what it means to pray for and be granted life.

Yom Kippur is all about effecting change and bettering oneself. One of the proscribed Jewish ways to improve ourselves is to help those around us by giving charity. The Lemonade Fund is a simple charity with very little overhead. It assists breast cancer patients financially while they are in active treatment so they can concentrate on getting well. No one should have to be indigent and seriously ill at the same time, as long as we can help it. http://www.lemonadefund.org/about

Please consider a donation to the Lemonade Fund. To donate: https://lemonadefund.org/to-donate/

We would like to thank the Young Israel of West Hempstead, West Hempstead, NY, and their Combined Israel Appeal for their generous support of the Lemonade Fund. Their grant will help us help many patients.

Finally, (it’s been a while) a lemon recipe for the break fast. Wishing everyone a meaningful Yom Kippur and a sweet, healthy and peaceful New Year.

Shari Mendes,
Lemonade Fund,
Israel Breast Cancer Emergency Relief Fund (IBCERF)
c/o ESRA
P.O.Box 3132
Herzliya 46104, ISRAEL

info: info@lemonadefund.org
to apply for assistance: Contact Anat at ESRA 09-950-8371
to donate: https://lemonadefund.org/to-donate/
website: http://www.lemonadefund.org/
facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/lemonadefund

Lemon Yoghurt Cupcakes

Here is a delicious and healthy lemon cake recipe.

Traditional lemon yoghurt cakes are loaded with refined white flour, sugar and saturated fat that really don’t do much to promote wellbeing. When I cook, my aim is to design a recipe not only for taste, but also for good health.
I’ve made these cupcakes using almonds to replace the white flour because it makes them so moist and naturally sweet as well as being gluten free. Almonds are also loaded with protein + good anti-inflamatory fats that help promote health. Eggs are also a great source of protein that can promote a healthy immune system. The addition of lemon + yoghurt gives these cupcakes a wonderful flavour and helps to activate the bicarb, that makes them rise.
3 cups (300 g / 10 1/2 oz) ground almonds / almond meal / almond flour
½ teaspoon baking soda – bi carb soda
2 free range or organic eggs
juice and zest from 1 lemon
½ cup (180 g / 6 1/4 oz) honey
1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste or extract
50 g macadamia nut oil or (olive oil, avocado oil, cold pressed coconut oil, butter)
¼ cup (80 g/ 2 3/4 oz) thick natural or Greek style yoghurt
Preheat your oven to 160 C. 320 F fan forced.
Combine almond meal + baking soda.
Add eggs, lemon juice + zest, honey, vanilla, oil and yoghurt.
Mix well.
Spoon into prepared cupcake tins.
Bake for 30 minutes or until golden and cooked through.
Remove from the oven and cool completely.
Makes 12

Profiles in Courage, May 2014

B., 53, from Sderot, is very ill. She has breast cancer that has metastasized throughout her body, and she will probably stop all treatment soon and enter hospice. Her only income comes from Bituach Leumi (National Insurance) and amounts to NIS 4300/month. The family has decided to move up B.’s daughter’s wedding and has requested assistance with buying B. a dress for the wedding. The Lemonade Fund awarded B. a grant to help her family with this request. We wish B. and her family a mazal tov and we wish B. peace in the days to come.

P., 33, is an immigrant from Romania living in a town north of Tel Aviv. She was recently diagnosed with breast cancer and is undergoing chemotherapy treatments to shrink her tumor prior to surgery. After surgery she will need radiation treatments. P. is divorced with two young children, ages 4 and 7. Her older child is severely autistic and needs extra help, and P. can’t rely on her ex-husband or any extended family. P. told her social workers that she is concerned about money because she had to take a leave from her job as a kindergarten teacher due to the side effects of her treatments. Until now she made ends meet with her income and alimony, but without her job, money is very tight. Bituach Leumi will hopefully provide her with some benefits, but approval takes time, and P. needs help now. The Lemonade Fund awarded P. a grant to help her during this critical time, so she can hire extra childcare and focus on getting well.

Another way to help: The Lemonade Fund is currently providing two young single mothers who are in treatment, in the Sharon area (Raanana and Kfar Sava,) with a Shabbat meal once a week, on Fridays. The commitment is to provide one meal to one of the mothers, no more than once every four months. If you are interested in signing up, please write to: info@lemonadefund.org. Thanks!

To donate: https://lemonadefund.org/to-donate/


January 2014 – Profiles in Courage

C., 45, is a single woman from a small town in the Negev with a history of schizophrenia and heart disease. She moved to Israel from the former Soviet Union in the early 1990’s and has been living in subsidized housing on disability assistance. A recent diagnosis of breast cancer was doubly complex for her, given her medical history. The nearest medical center is in Beer Sheba, more than an hour away, and she is staying in Beer Sheba while she is getting treatment. Her Social Worker, from the Breast Center at Soroka Medical Center in Beer Sheba, submitted an application to the Lemonade Fund on C.’s behalf, requesting assistance with cost of living and travel expenses for C. while she is in treatment. A Lemonade Fund grant was awarded.

M., 46, originally from Ethiopia, lives in a town north of Tel Aviv. She is separated from her husband and lives with her adult son who is currently working in odd jobs in order to try to support them. M. had worked as a nanny, but is now unable to work due to a recent diagnosis of advanced bilateral breast cancer. She is receiving neo-adjuvant chemotherapy to reduce the size of her tumors prior to surgery, and she is having a hard time with the side effects of the treatments. M. and her son were living below the poverty line before her illness, and now that they have increased costs due to illness, they are in real financial distress. The Lemonade Fund awarded them a grant to help them get through this difficult time.

Five years post diagnosis… what’s been learned

Five years post diagnosis… what’s been learned

September 2013 – Profiles in Courage

Sadly, September applicants were unusually  young; all born after 1975, with children ranging in ages from 5-16.

L., 38, is a single Mom with three children, ages 15, 11 and 5, living near Sderot. She had been employed prior to her diagnosis, as a hairdresser, but now cannot work during her treatments. She receives less than 1000 shekels per month for alimony and is waiting for approval for disability payments. In the meantime, she and her family are in financial free fall. The Lemonade Fund was created to help patients exactly like L. It was our privilege to award L. a grant to help her get through this difficult time.

T., also 38, hails from the south, and is the mother of five children, ranging in age from 13 to 5. Unfortunately she was diagnosed with very advanced disease and she requires extensive treatment and surgery. Her husband works in a low paying job and prior to her illness, T. worked as a gannenet (kindergarten teacher.) They made ends meet with two salaries, but the loss of T.’s salary has been catastrophic for them and they are no longer able to afford basics. In her application T. requested help so that her family could have food for the holidays as well as money for school supplies for her children. T.’s situation is very serious and we are gratified to be able to help her and her family.

As anyone who is not color blind or newly arrived from the moon knows, October is Breast Cancer Awareness month, or Pinktober, as it is cutely known. Some, such as survivor, Peggy Orenstein, see the ubiquitous pink ribbon symbol (hard to miss everything from pink pretzels to pink-sneakered NFL football players in October) as over-commercialization of a disease and as controversial. She raises interesting issues-would be interested to hear what you think:


The fact that significant progress in reducing mortality hasn’t been made, despite all of this publicity and research, is sobering. On the other hand, awareness is leading to earlier detection, which is, no arguments possible,  better than late detection. So….no matter how one feels about pink ribbons, the Lemonade Fund is using this opportunity to remind all women to practice self examination and to keep to a regular mammogram schedule.

Wishing all good luck with the new school/work year.

Chicago Bears v Dallas Cowboys

Profiles in Courage: August Lemonade Fund Grant Recipients

Lemonade Tales:

Profiles of Two Brave Women Who Received IBCERF (Israel Breast Cancer Emergency Relief Fund) Grants this Month, August 2012.

N., a Russian-Jewish immigrant from the Sharon area, with 5 children, youngest of whom are 1 year old twins. Divorced and diagnosed in July with late-stage breast cancer. Undergoing chemotherapy treatment in order to shrink tumor prior to surgery. Unable to work due to side effects of treatment. Even with state benefits, family is near destitute. IBCERF (Israel Breast Cancer Emergency Relief Fund) grant awarded, August 19, 2012.

A., an Israeli Arab woman from the north, with 3 young children, 1 with Down’s Syndrome. Married, husband lost his job within the last year. She had been the sole family support, working as a beloved member of the nursing staff at a large Israeli hospital for many years, until she was diagnosed with breast cancer that required a mastectomy, in July.  She will begin chemotherapy soon. The entire department where she works helped her with her application. IBCERFgrant awarded, August 19, 2012.