Hope Blooms is an annual fundraiser for Gems of Hope that not only denotes both a sense of hope and resilience to our community, but directly supports local cancer patients and their families. Looking back to 2008, Gems of Hope was given the opportunity to continue the legacy of the Daffodil Days fundraiser when the American Cancer Society made the decision to no longer host the fundraiser in the Corridor. As such, Gems recognized the importance of the fundraiser in our local community and created Hope Blooms. The framework of the activity remains true to the simplicity of the original concept; spread hope. In that way, the fundraiser consists of purchasing daffodil bunches, daffodil arrangements, and potted daffodils as well as an annual mascot. The daffodils are purchased for individual display or as a gift of hope which are then delivered to cancer patients undergoing treatment at local hospitals and treatment facilities. The annual mascot, a new cuddly stuffed animal each year, is purchased in the same manner, as a keepsake or as a gift for a child fighting cancer.
Daffodils are one of the first flowers of the spring which symbolize rejuvenation, hope and happiness for the future.
August 17, 2014 marked the day the Rudzki family's life changed forever. On that day, their then 1 year old, Marek, was flown to the hospital via air ambulance after a fall. At the hospital, while evaluating his head trauma, the doctor’s discovered a softball-size tumor. The tumor was a very rare form of brain cancer; Choroid Plexus Carcinoma (CPC). CPC only presents itself in 0.3–0.6% of all brain tumors. Given the rarity of the cancer, both of his parents, Cliff and Nikki, underwent genetic testing to see if either parent carried the same genetic mutations (TP53). Much to their surprise, Cliff was a carrier of the same mutation which would require him to undergo annual cancer screenings. 4 years after Marek’s initial discovery, Cliff received a far too familiar discovery, a brain tumor was found. Luckily it was found early and was relatively small in size. On October 15, 2018 Cliff had the tumor removed, by the same doctor who removed Marek’s.
With the support of their family, Nikki, wife/mom, Truman, son/brother, their 5 Seasons Crossfit community (the gym Cliff and Nikki own in Cedar Rapids), loved ones and friends, both Marek and Cliff were able to beat cancer and are thriving today!
Thank You to Our Sponsors!
March 10, 2021
9:00am - 5:00pm
FLOWERAMA | 3135 1st Ave SE, Cedar Rapids, IA 52403
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