When I was a teenager, a friend’s mother was diagnosed with colon cancer. I will never forget what a bright light she was, and how utterly unfair her diagnosis felt. Honestly, it still does. In honor of the newly recognized national Colorectal Cancer Awareness month, this blog post shares three ideas for gifts to give loved ones facing colon cancer or rectal cancer. Let’s wrap friends and relatives facing this devastating disease in love and support this March, and always.
Colorectal Cancer By the Numbers
Let’s begin with a few statistics. First, did you know that colorectal cancer (CRC) is the second leading cause of cancer deaths in America? According to the American Cancer Society, approximately 150,000 American are diagnosed with colon or rectal cancer per year. In addition, while people over the age of 50 have a higher risk for developing colorectal cancer, about 49 cases of CRC are diagnosed in younger Americans per day. I was surprised to learn that 1 in 23 men and 1 in 25 women will be diagnosed with CRC in their lifetime. Furthermore, Black Americans, people with a family history of colorectal cancer, and people who smoke, drink alcohol or are obese are at greater risk for CRC. While the numbers are sobering, there ways to ease the pain by showing support.
The 3 Best Colon Cancer and Rectal Cancer Support Gifts
Here are some of my favorite gifts for people going through colon or rectal cancer:
1. Personalized Quilt. Show your support for a loved one facing colorectal cancer with a personalized quilt from their biggest fans. Our quilts feature custom squares with your drawings and messages on them, making them a lasting symbol of your love. They also make excellent group gifts since squares can be purchased on an individual basis ($25/each).
Bonus: Quiltlove is donating 10% of proceeds from all colorectal cancer support quilts organized by 3/31/23 to Fight CRC.
2. Donation. Give a donation to a nonprofit organization that supports CRC research and advocacy. The nonprofit Fight CRC has a program where you can honor and remember loved ones by putting their photo and name on the National Mall in D.C. Learn more here. Or, simply make a donation in a loved ones name to the charity of your/their choice.
3. Keychain with Heart. Young crafter Kambria Thompson makes and sells custom colorectal cancer ribbon keychains to honor her papa, a stage IV colorectal cancer survivor. Check out Kambria’s Etsy shop here to browse her inspirational product and support her in her mission to raise CRC awareness.
Let’s Beat Colorectal Cancer Together
With screening and risk prevention strategies, we have the tools to minimize the risk of CRC. But we can’t do it alone. Let’s join together to support those going through colorectal cancer today, and do what we can to change the course of tomorrow. Are you in?
Have you given or received a CRC support gift? If so, I would love to hear about it. Contact me here to share your story. In addition, I would love to hear about other strategies for supporting cancer patients.
As always, thanks for reading.