Evy Michalopoulos, the Founder of the Project has grappled with cancer as she unfortunately lost her mother to the disease. Her personal experience with cancer caused her to empathise with others who were diagnosed and compelled her to form the Machi Filotimo Cancer Project.
“Going from healthy to hospitalised is not something you expect, but in reality, it can happen to anyone, and the last thing on your mind is how you will pay for the bills”, explains Evy.
"On the 4th February 2018, World Cancer Day, I lost my beloved Mother, Andromachi (Machi) at the age of 68, to Ovarian Cancer. This was the most difficult, challenging and heart breaking experience I have ever had to go through.
She fell ill on the 27th December 2017 and I attempted to admit her into a local private clinic. I was unable to provide the requested deposit that the clinic required. The only option I had was to admit her into the closest state run hospital and carry the costs of all her medical and wound care needs on my own.
After undergoing numerous tests she was officially diagnosed with Stage 4 Ovarian Cancer on 18th January 2018. The Cancer had metastasized and as a result of her current state of health, there was no cure or treatment available for her.
I was told to take her home, give her palliative care and get her affairs in order.
Needless to say I was beyond shocked when my beautiful Mom passed away in my arms, two weeks later".
I have a deep yearning inside of me to tell as many people as I can about my journey and my Mothers “six weeks to live” and to raise awareness of the signs and symptoms that lead to Cancer.
Having experienced “six weeks to live” was an incredibly hard journey for me and together with this amazing project, I hope to create awareness and help others during this very difficult time and most importantly, change lives.
Through my journey, I realized how difficult the path that one has to walk is, whether you are the patient or the family of the patient.
The non-profit creates cancer awareness for those who have been diagnosed and offers Cancer Patient Navigation services. The organisation’s aim is to gather support from individuals and businesses who can contribute in any way they can.
One out of four people are affected by cancer in South Africa. This staggering statistic makes one realise how prevalent the disease is and how important it is to be surrounded by friends and family for support. True to the saying, ‘cancer can be beaten’, however, it is essential that one obtains enough funds to combat the illness as quite a lot of money goes into the treatment of cancer.
In collaboration with our Medical Experts and Filotimo Cancer Patient Navigators, we work harmoniously in all areas related to addressing Cancer control objectives in order to refer patients and provide support. Navigation is the individualized assistance given to patients to help overcome the challenges of the very daunting cancer journey, from diagnosis through treatment and into Survivorship.
We continue to educate through various social media platforms and in person events.
We will continue to do what we do.... in the SPIRIT OF FILOTIMO!
FOUNDER & CEO
Evy and Machi September 2017