Organization Hosts Day of Pampering for Cancer Patients, Survivors and Caregivers

Mikey’s Miracle Foundation, which is dedicated to “providing everyday miracles to families with cancer,” hosted “A Beautiful Cause,” a day of pampering at Salon Avenue in Owings Mills, Maryland, for women currently undergoing cancer treatment, caregivers and cancer survivors on February 25, 2018.

Even though this was the first time that the foundation held an event of this type, the organization will celebrate two years of service in July, this year. In addition to hosting events to benefit people fighting cancer and their caregivers, the foundation provides support in the form of sponsorship and referrals for individual and family counseling, nutrition services, meal planning, professional cleaning services and transportation to and from treatment.

Jade Merritt, founder of Mikey’s Miracle Foundation, vividly remembers the day she and her mother were shopping at a department store and she asked her mother to try on some makeup at the MAC counter. Her mother, who was undergoing treatment for colon cancer at the time, declined because she did not feel good about herself. Her mother’s skin had changed and the emotional effect of fighting cancer had taken its toll on her. Jade remembers encouraging her mother by telling her she was beautiful. She says that experience inspired her to create “A Beautiful Cause.”

Unfortunately, her mother, Michal Sharon Neverdon-Merritt succumbed to colon cancer in January 2016. Yet, through the devastating pain of losing her mother, she created the foundation, which she says has helped her through the grieving process.

“I get to talk about my mom every single day and tell others how amazing she was. What an honor and tribute to her life to be able to bless someone else,” the Randallstown, Maryland native said with pride.

Merritt expressed her gratitude for all of the beauty professionals in her network who were eager to provide services and information to participants at the event, including: Dr. Chambers-Harris, founder of Alodia Hair Care, discussed stimulating hair growth after cancer treatment and the all-natural hair care products in her line; Iyonna Woods, a medical laboratory scientist, discussed the importance of using products with natural ingredients on the hair and skin, like the aluminum-free deodorant provided in her Fancy Free Hair and Skin line of products; Susan Hopson and Paula Sieng, the owners of Nail Candy Shop created beautiful nail designs for the ladies who participated; Nicole Word and Lauren Johnson did makeup; Shanee’ Green and Sharia Cunningham provided full hair services; Akos Regal, owner of Regal Clothes, donated beautiful Ankara print head wraps; and Adrienne Munroe, creator of Fabulous Moms Rock and Danicia Ross, owner of Vanity Pink MD provided wardrobe make-overs.

This event was a blessing to many people, including Minister Valjean Gilmore of Morning Star Baptist Church, a uterine cancer survivor who along with eight members of her church’s cancer support group, were pampered at the event.

Minister Gilmore started the cancer support group a few years ago, because she realized the importance of having a connection with others who had survived or were also fighting this awful disease. The group members pray together, support and encourage one another through treatment because no one should have to endure the emotional, spiritual and mental battle that accompanies having cancer alone.

The Western High School graduate who earned a bachelor’s degree in Anthropology with a Human Biology Concentration from Temple University and a master’s degree in biology from Towson University says that she never imagined she would be in this place in her life at this time. When her mother was diagnosed with cancer, Merritt was traveling around the country conducting clinical research trials and considering a move to Texas. Her plans were put on hold as she helped with her mother’s care. A few months after her mother passed away, she had the idea to start a foundation in her mother’s memory to provide support for other families out there going through the same thing.

It was clear to see the joy on the faces of the participants after having their hair, make-up and nails done. One woman, currently undergoing treatment for Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma said being pampered was a blessing. She said she felt “elegant and special” and it was needed after having to stay in the house for a long period of time because of the risk of infection.

This was the goal for Jade and Mikey’s Miracle Foundation, to uplift those battling cancer and show them that they are still beautiful despite what this disease does to their minds and bodies. A Beautiful Cause was full of love, hope, support and glam— essential elements for motivating those fighting cancer to continue doing so, with a reminder that they are not doing it alone.

For more information about Mikey’s Miracle Foundation, the support it provides or to make donation, visit: www.mikeysmiraclefoundation.com.