Waves of Hope program aims to help Maui County residents fighting cancer

PC: Manaʻolana Pink Paddlers website

Launched by a Maui-based paddling group of cancer survivors and allies, Nā ‘Ale O Mana‘olana (Waves of Hope) program wants to help fund alternative cancer treatments and complementary care for Maui County residents actively dealing with cancer.

Naturopathic medicine, herbal remedies, massage and acupuncture are some examples of care that’s covered, according to a news release. Also, the program helps patients cover copays for doctor visits, treatments, tests and expensive prescription drugs.

In order to qualify for funding, a cancer patient must need financial assistance, be a permanent Maui County resident, 18 years old or older and be diagnosed with cancer by a qualified medical doctor. Scholarship maximum is $500 and payments are made directly to health providers and not patients.

The program was started by Mana’olana Pink Paddlers, a nonprofit organization based in Kihei that was founded by breast cancer survivors. It’s the state’s only paddling club dedicated to helping cancer patients and survivors regain health after the grueling effects of cancer treatments, the release said.

Waves of Hope began when the group won $14,000 from 100 Women Who Care in 2019. In 2020, the group received a $10,000 donation from Uʻilani Fund. Since then, the program has received grants from the Atherton Family Foundation and Laurence H. Dorcy Hawaiian Foundation.

“Thanks to all of this support, we are able to reach out to Molokai and Lanai cancer patients as well as Maui,” Mary Dungans, Manaʻolana president said in the release.

Applications must be filled out online, and are reviewed by a committee of dedicated healthcare professionals.

Although Mana’olana does not want anyone to be denied financial assistance, they have limits on the number of patients they can assist. 

For more information about the group and the program, visit Manaʻolana on its website.

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