Founded in 2006 by musician Andrew McMahon, the Dear Jack Foundation provides impactful programming that directly benefits adolescent and young adults (AYA) diagnosed with cancer. The Dear Jack Foundation first reached out to Purple in May of 2019 when one of their warriors was requesting a mattress. We have been bed partners ever since and we always jump at the chance to accommodate a request for our products to those on the Dear Jack’s LifeList.
Purple created Hero Week because there are so many heroes quietly serving that should be honored. We knew that the great work happening at the Dear Jack Foundation is the exact acts we want to amplify.
The amazing team at Dear Jack were very excited to honor Kayla, their Director of Programs. Here’s Why:
Kayla is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW) who has over 9 years of hospital oncology social work experience and program development. She joined Dear Jack over a year ago and her impact has been incredible! Working tirelessly behind the scenes, Kayla has managed Dear Jack Foundation’s Breathe Now wellness retreats for survivors and their significant others, helping couples learn and grow together post-cancer. She has also been an integral part of Dear Jack Foundation’s LifeList wish-granting program through her one-on-one patient/social worker communication and support, providing hope in what can be a very difficult time.
About 6 weeks ago, when everything had to move to virtual situations due to COVID-19, Kayla put her social work skills in overdrive to make sure Dear Jack Foundation’s young adult cancer patients, survivors, and their families have a support system and are safe but staying connected. Between hosting virtual Netflix watch parties, scheduling online yoga classes facilitated by Dear Jack’s Breathe Now yoga instructor, developing partnerships with other nonprofits that benefit AYA cancer patients, one-on-one patient outreach, and more, she has ensured this often-overlooked demographic feels heard and loved during a time of uncertainty and isolation for many of Dear Jack’s cancer patients.
Kayla is the last person that would ever expect or even want recognition. Social workers are often overlooked as everyday heroes. She’s probably going to be embarrassed that we are shining this amazing spotlight on her, but we couldn’t resist! We are incredibly proud to have an everyday hero on our staff in Kayla.
Kayla, like so many others, are our heroes! Along with our partners at Snowe, Rhone, Aura, and Alala, we are so excited to honor the nurses, teachers, mothers, veterans, and even hairdressers all this week and give them (and you!) a chance to win a Purple Suite!