Maria Fundora founded nonprofit Purple Pansies in 2008 following her own mother’s death from pancreatic cancer. She felt called to raise awareness and crucial research dollars for this chronically underfunded but deadly cancer.
The mission of Purple Pansies is to raise funds for research, clinical trials, early detection through TGen (Translational Genomics Research Institute) and to aide families in our community who have a family member suffering from pancreatic cancer and financially can use our help. Purple Pansies has raised over $2 Million dollars since the organization began. Last year with the help of generous donors and partners like Kroger, Kraft/Heinz, Anheuser Busch and Coca Cola we were able to raise $500,000. This year they have set a goal to raise $600,000 with an anonymous donor willing to match the amount.
Maria was once again motivated to step up and help the community during the COVID-19 pandemic. Maria and her team from Purple Pansies have provided meals for over 14 teams of front-line workers at various hospitals and Kroger (their premier partner) grocery workers across Cobb, Forsyth , Fulton and Gwinnett counties, as well as to Meals by Grace, Safehouse Outreach and Operation Smile and pancreatic cancer survivor families. Maria knows the front-line health care workers around Atlanta and beyond are working incredibly hard and providing care for those who are sick (including cancer patients) during this crisis. Cancer doesn’t go away because of COVID-19, it just makes it more difficult for cancer patients during the crisis.
Maria’s goal is to give just a little bit back in honor of her mother and so many others who have died from pancreatic cancer by giving compassion and making a lasting difference in the lives of others. Year to date, Purple Pansies has granted four pancreatic warriors, monetary support in their continued fight against pancreatic cancer.
Maria is also the owner of Casa Nuova Italian Restaurant as well as Cork & Glass in Alpharetta.
What You’ll Learn in This Episode
- How Purple Pansies started
- How Purple Pansies is raising pancreatic cancer awareness
- How Maria raises money for the nonprofit
- How Maria’s restaurant is involved with Purple Pansies
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