Cancer Survivor Seeks To 'Refresh' Community 9-21-2010 - WNEM TV 5

Cancer Survivor Seeks To 'Refresh' Community 9-21-2010

A Mid-Michigan cancer survivor is in the running for $250,000 in a national contest.
The Pepsi Refresh Project gives away thousands of dollars each year and is designed to help people, businesses and nonprofits with ideas that will make a positive impact on their communities.
Now 32-year-old Jessica Root wants to start a bakery whose key motive would be to help those suffering from cancer.
"The main goals would be to get it up and running and just to help as many people as I can. I love to bake and I love to help," Root said. "My sister and my brother heard about it. They saw a commercial on TV and then they decided to put my name in to do it."
Root was diagnosed with breast cancer over a year ago, and after living through chemotherapy and a double mastectomy, she credits the support she received from her local community with getting her through that time.
"We want to be nonprofit within a year so that the profits will go to underinsured or uninsured cancer patients," said Root. "In my situation, I was too old for Medicaid and to young for the National Breast Cancer control group. I found out that there [are] a lot of people who fall through the cracks, so I wanted to be able to help them."
Bakery of Hope would also help cancer patients with their medical expenses.
"The money would be used for mammograms, chemotherapy, radiation, genetic testing and we also wanted to do one vacation grant a year to send someone who has been through all of it somewhere," said Root.
If Root wins, she said she plans to set up shop in the Montrose area. Root said she also wants to give back the community who helped her through such a difficult time.
"I would not mind having the kids come through and learn how to bake and cook, and I would not mind having support group meetings in the bakery," she said.
Anyone wanting to support Root and the Bakery of Hope can do so by voting here at the Pepsi web site. Supporters can also send the text message 102609 to 73774 to vote. The public can cast votes everyday until the end of September.
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