Why I PMC - Lisa Scherber by Meredith Beaton Starr

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Why I PMC - Lisa Scherber by Meredith Beaton Starr

Why I PMC - Lisa Scherber by Meredith Beaton Starr

I first met Lisa Scherber in the Jimmy Fund Clinic back when we were both in graduate school. She has  been at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute for the past 24 years and  has built one of the most esteemed and respected programs of its kind.  Her official title is Director of Patient and Family Programs but the title she is most proud of is what the kids in the Jimmy Fund Clinic call her — The Play Lady!  Lisa is a 14 year PMC rider and heads up Team ROAR - Reindeers on a Ride.  Team ROAR started with a passion to create something magical for the Jimmy Fund patients and their families.   

"The holidays are always the most difficult time for a child, so Reindeers on a Ride began.  Nine years and $1,547,236+ later there are 30+ committed and compassionate reindeer on my team that ride for the smiles on the kids faces!!  My favorite thing about riding the PMC is riding next to parents of our Jimmy Fund patients.  We ride for them, and they ride for all those parents that come next… it’s inspiring beyond worlds.” Lisa says.   

(Lisa Scherber being hoisted by PMC Team ROAR at Babson College during #PMC2014)

Lisa is a dedicated and compassionate professional who could not imagine working anywhere other than at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.  She describes it as a place filled with hope, courage and strength.  “What makes DFCI special is the people who walk through the doors each day, and the commitment the staff have to provide the best possible care.  I believe we go above and beyond everyday and are not satisfied with anything less.  That is why the PMC is so critical to our success.  It allows us all to do more, to fight more, and feel that at the end of the day we did everything possible.”   

Children and teens in the Jimmy Fund Clinic sometimes endure hours of outpatient treatment and waiting.  Lisa and her staff make the time go by by providing activities and creative programs like art therapy and meditation.  Recently, two incredibly talented and inspiring teenagers, Eva and Maddie, decided to make a video to show people the hope and resilience that is present everyday in the Jimmy Fund Clinic. They met as patients in the Jimmy Fund Clinic and have become close friends.  Lisa shared the video with us at PMC and we couldn’t wait to share it with the PMC community. 

I asked Eva and Maddie to share their inspirations for making this video and what they learned through creating it.  

Eva:   "Maddie inspired me to make this video; she’s been a real beacon of hope and energy for me since Day 1, so when she mentioned to me that she wanted to start making a video at DFCI, I jumped right in to help!  I think we both wanted to show people that the Jimmy Fund clinic is more than a place to be “treated”.  It's a place to be healed and it’s filled with fighters of all sizes.  To share the hope we have and to brighten something that doesn’t have to be dark is a gift in itself.  We learned that it doesn’t take much to bring positivity to the world; all you need is a camera and an open mind.” 

Maddie:  “I wanted to do so something in the clinic that would be fun for us and the kids and give me a reason to get up every morning and go get chemotherapy.  People always listen to the song and say it reminds them of me.  For me — it reminds me of all the kids there.”  

"We want the PMC Community to know what a difference support makes.  Seeing the PMC world and audience come together is powerful, and it helps us realize that we are not alone.  It is our hope that the video we made sends the same message.  'Like a small boat on the ocean, sending big waves into motion', each individual has an impact and can make tomorrow a better place to be. It’s the place where cancer and community meet that light comes out.” 

Thanks to Lisa Scherber and all of the staff in the Jimmy Fund for the work they do everyday.  And thanks to Eva and Maddie for creating this incredible video and showing all of us their “Fight Song”!

(PMC Director of Stewardship, Meredith Beaton Starr on stage with Adam Ezra Group at MMA during #PMC2015)