Our House

About Us

Mission Statement Back to top ↑

The Mission of the Cancer Care of NCW Inc. is to help alleviate the day to day inconvenience of cancer by providing a Regional Cancer Resource Center whereby patients may be assisted in their daily routine by providing help with housing, and additional support including but not limited to their social and rehabilitative needs.

Vision Statement Back to top ↑

It is our commitment and vision to recognize the enormous toll that cancer takes on individuals in our communities. We pledge our support to enhance the quality of life to these individuals by meeting their expressed physical, emotional and financial needs while preserving human dignity.

Cancer Care NCW is Back to top ↑

  • A private, non-profit, incorporation
  • Not associated with The American Cancer Society or any other organization
  • Supported by local donations and fund raising

History and Structure of Cancer Care NCW

Cancer Care of North Central Washington, Inc. was started in 1993 by a small group of cancer survivors and health care professionals who realized that some of the needs of cancer patients in the North Central Washington area were not being met. The first project, which continues to be the main focus of the organization, was to purchase, remodel and furnish a hospitality house "Our House" where cancer patients can stay while undergoing cancer treatments in Wenatchee. The second project was to build a new 8-bedroom house, which was completed in the spring of 2000. The Regional Cancer Center in Wenatchee draws patients from all North Central Washington. Some patients drive as far as 3 hours one-way for treatment. When undergoing radiation treatment, the patient receives treatment five days a week for six to eight weeks. In some cases, the expense and difficulty of traveling these distances meant the patients refused treatment.

In addition to providing housing while patients undergo treatment, Cancer Care also provides financial assistance for travel expenses, for the purchase of medical needs and emergency assistance for living expenses. Cancer Care offers nursing scholarships, transportation to and from treatment, a support group and maintains a library of books of special interest to those facing a medical crisis, which is available to the community. Cancer Care also offers a grant to assist cancer patients encountering extraordinary medical expenses.

A volunteer board of nine community members, several of whom are cancer survivors, operates Cancer Care of NCW Inc.

Cancer Care is a completely inependent organization not associated with any national cancer organization. With the exception of three part-time employees, Cancer Care is operated entirely by volunteers. A volunteer host or hostess staffs "Our House" 4-½ days a week. Patients return to their homes each Friday and return on Mondays. A volunteer resident manager lives on the premises and is available during nighttime hours. Approximately 100 volunteers — many of them cancer survivors — participate actively in Cancer Care. Since opening in September 1993, Our House has hosted 648 cancer patients who have stayed 11,873 nights often accompanied by a caregiver, for periods of up to eight weeks.

What is Our House? Back to top ↑

Our House is a project of Cancer Care of NCW, Inc. and it provides a home away from home for out-of-town cancer patients undergoing treatment in Wenatchee. Our House has eight guest bedrooms each capable of accomodating an additional person. There is a family room with TV, VCR, DVD and stereo, a living room, dining room, four bathrooms and a well-equipped kitchen for the use of all guests. In addition, there is a private apartment for our resident manager. A patio is available for the use of guests when weather permits. Our House is utilized to accomodate the greatest number of guests. Occassionally it may be necessary to change rooms or share a room. Our House is a residential facility and offers no nursing care.

Timeline of Events Back to top ↑

See what happened in: 1993 | 1994 | 1998 | 1999 | 2000 | 2012

March 1993

Cancer Care of NCW was the "inspiration" of Karen Pell, a cancer survivor. She recruited other cancer survivors and interested individuals and together they wrote the Mission and Vision statements. Ray Taylor, executive director of the Greater Wenatchee Community Foundation was instrumental in helping the group get started with advice and support.

Weekly cancer support group started by cancer survivor Mary Lowe.

April 1993

The Greater Wenatchee Community Foundation lent its non profit status to the group until it could receive its own.

May 1993

Betsy Tontini and Lary Sexton received permission from Cancer Care of NCW to pursue starting a house for cancer patients who came for raidation therapy patients coming from outside the Wenatchee area.

May 1993

karen Pell mentioned that we were looking for a house to a client, Diane Cheadle, who in turn called Betsy. A house committee was formed by Betsy. They evaluated the house and started negotiations to purchase it. Fundraising was started.

May 1993

Cancer Care of NCW was incorporated. Application was made with the help of the attorney Tom O'Connell of Davis, Arneil Law Firm.

June 1993

Roger Harris CPA of Homchick, Clark, Smith, Focht, & Associates, helped with prepring of non-profit corporation papers, also with budget.

June 1993

Possession of house. Updating and remodeling started of existing 3 bedroom house. Fundraising continued.

August 1993

Remodeling and updating continued at Our House. Live-in house manager Leona Massengale recruited.

September 1993

501(c) status obtained from IRS and we left umbrella of Greater Wenatchee Community Foundation.

September 7, 1993

Our House opened to first guests.

October 1993

Remodeling of garage into 2 additional bedrooms and bathrooms.

December 1993

Remodeling completed.

February 1994

Mary Lowe requested support for an audio tape called "Going Home" in memory of Ann Dalton. It is a tape to help patients and families with the dying process.

June 1994

Two of the four interest-free loans paid off.

September 1994

Mortgage of Hour House paid off.

September 1994

"Going Home" tapes available for sale as a fundraiser for Cancer Care.

December 1994

Remaining two interenst-free loans paid off.

May 1998

Purchased lot on Castlerock Street.

October 1998

Groundbreaking for the new Our House.

April 1999

Construction begins.

February 2000

Occupancy of new Our House at 1708 Castlerock Avenue.

June 2012

Cancer Care NCW and Our House website completed.