Today we celebrate our 30th birthday!
What a milestone! Three decades of saving lives. That's pretty amazing when you think of where we started. We had a total bank account of $7,000 that got used up quickly, two volunteers and one paid employee, our tech Terry Mitchell and lots of dreams.
More than dreams we had tenacity. We trudged through each day with a kind of doggedness, overcame barriers and refused to listen to the naysayers. Believe me, there were a lot of them back in 1986.
A lot of folks thought we were crazy or incredibly naive to think we could actually have a place like The Rose...a place that offered services at no charge to those who needed them and was still 'good enough' to attract women who had the ability to pay.
In 1986, insurance companies didn't cover screening mammograms, so women had to pay cash for their screenings. At The Rose it was only $50.
Isn't it odd, and sad, that thirty years later there are still so many women that need our help? Isn't it odd, and amazing, that in spite of dozens more mammography places to choose from over 30,000 women each year who have insurance and money select The Rose?
We still have our share of naysayers-not as many as before that's for sure--after thirty years we have made our mark and it's a pretty big mark in this community and this State.
Yet, there are still lots of people who don't understand why we do this work, why we show up every day and open our doors to women who can't pay. Those are the same people who think everything worthwhile in life is measured by the amount of money it makes, or the prestige it offers or the fame it brings.
But those of us lucky enough to be "Picked by The Rose" have a different definition for the word worthwhile.
Our definition is wrapped around the lives we've touched. It's found in the women who are treated with dignity when they have to ask for charity. It can be counted in the number of years we gave a mother, or grandmother, or sister a chance to be with the people she loves. It's obvious in the peace of mind that comes when a woman can concentrate on her recovery and not have to worry about how she will pay for treatment.
Those are some of the things in life we define as worthwhile.
Being with each other, having coworkers who are strong enough to say YES to life, who understand the importance of being supportive and having each other's backand who basically care enough to be part of The Rose are among the other 'worthwhiles' on our list.
Today we must celebrate! The Rose, each other, our patients, life!
Join me. We have so very much worthwhile to enjoy!
All my best and more,
CEO & Co-Founder of The Rose