Funds available to serve children and families
New grant funds are being made available to local service organizationsThe call for financial assistance from a local family is the impetus behind an upcoming fundraising effort hosted by Community First Bank employees.
Sally Wilhelm of Prineville, longtime survivor of Leukemia, recently underwent a round of treatments aimed at squelching the returning disease. Diagnosed in 1994, Wilhelm has been able to meet and beat the disease thus far, due in part to the ongoing support of her many friends and supporters of the community.
According to Kim Grant of Community First Bank, Wilhelm is scheduled to return to Prineville from Portland later this month after undergoing a promising new treatment.
Unlike previous treatments of donor lymphocyte transfusions or bone marrow transplants, the new treatment is the medication recently approved by the Food and Drug Administration formerly called ST1571.
The bright orange pill was developed by Novartis Pharmaceuticals in collaboration with Brian Druker, M.D., director of the Oregon Cancer Institute's Leukemia Center at Oregon Health & Science University. A fortuitous happenstance for their Prineville patient.
Happily for the Wilhelms, the miracle pill seems to be just the ticket for Sally.
Although it's still early in the treatment she appears to be responding well to the medication.
Unfortunately the pill is not inexpensive _ at $20 each which she is reportedly required to take four times a day for the rest of her life.
Grant is spearheading the fundraiser from which she indicated, they hope to raise about $1,500.
The effort involves a car wash, hotdog stand (donated by Wayne and Brenda Hanson) at the Community First Bank parking lot on June 16 and a raffle.
The raffle prizes include:
u One person and a guest for 18 holes of golf, cart included at Prineville Golf and Country Club
u $100 gift certificate at Thriftway (donated by Bob Komlofske)
u A night at Stafford Inn and dinner for two at Club Pioneer (donated by respective businesses).
Raffle tickets are $1/each or 6/$5 and are available at Community First Bank.
"Everybody at the bank is here for Sally's support and we want to do what we can for her and the family," Grant said. "We talk to her all the time. She is doing really well right now. The new treatment is going to be a great expense for them and we want to help them to continue to meet the medical bills."
Previous fundraisers and recent donations from the community have helped the Wilhelms to meet expenses not covered by insurance. Even though she is not staying in the hospital, Wilhelm's living expenses are pretty hefty including $1,500 a month for an apartment.
"Her friends and everybody at work are pulling for her," Grant said.
For more information about the fundrasier call the bank at 447-4105. Cash donations may also be made to Community First Bank Prineville Branch, to the Sally Wilhelm Non-Profit Fund.