By Libby Hopkins
Maya Angelou once said, “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” Many women of color from all around Tampa Bay and beyond love the way Peggie Sherry and her foundation, Faces of Courage have made them feel. They’ve felt loved, friendship and empowerment from the Women of Color Camps Sherry and her foundation have hosted over the years at Rotary’s Camp Florida in Brandon. Sherry decided to bring the Women of Color Camp back this year because she was unable to host it last year due to looking for land to build a permanent Faces of Courage camp.
“This camp is for women with all types of cancer,” Sherry said. “They are coming from all over and some as far away as California and Chicago. Since we don’t advertise, I asked them how they found out about us and they said from survivor blogs.”
Faces of Courage is a non-profit organization located in the Tampa Bay area that offers free camps and events to women and children with cancer and blood illnesses. The Women of Color Camp will be held Friday-Sunday, August 1-3 at Rotary’s Camp Florida.
“Often in the African American community they don’t talk about disease and even have a hard time saying the word cancer,” Sherry said. “When they come to camp they don’t have to hide that they are bald or fighting cancer.” She also said that the campers are able to speak freely with each other about their disease and they create lifelong friendships at the camp.
The foundation is currently looking for camp and camper sponsors for the upcoming camp.
“We are always in need of donations, gift cards, gas cards and in kind donations in addition to camp sponsors,” Sherry said. “It only takes $250 to cover the cost of a survivor for the whole weekend.”
The foundation and Sherry hope that the campers who come to the camp will have fun-filled weekend free of worry from their health issues.
“We always want to effect change in their health outcome by providing education, support and fun in the peaceful serenity of Rotary’s Camp Florida,” Sherry said.
To learn more about Faces of Courage, visit www.facesofcourage.org. To become a camp sponsor or sponsor a camper for the weekend at the Women of Color Camp, contact Sherry at 948-7478.