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Friday, January 28, 2022

Expect Miracles Keeps In Touch and Tackles Financial Literacy

Reported by Andrew Lusk

The folks at a cancer-fighting, mutual fund industry charity have launched a new way to stay in touch. The organization's head is also spreading the word about a number of initiatives to be detailed there, including a financial literacy program aimed at young adult cancer survivors.

Frank Heavey
Expect Miracles Foundation
Executive Director
Frank Heavey, executive director of the Boston-based Expect Miracles Foundation, tells MFWire, "Our goal is to [offer] better, clearer, and more frequent communications with our supporters, donors, and sponsors. We decided to launch a newsletter to provide updates regarding our research programs ... and our Samfund programs, which provide direct financial assistance to young adult survivors."

Rachel Ayotte, Expect Miracles' digital marketing and communications coordinator, runs the new, quarterly, newsletter. She joined the organization in September.

Ayotte writes to MFWire, "Our supporters are really at the core of our mission. I'm eager to continue updating them on their incredible impact and connecting with them in new and exciting ways!"

Meanwhile, today the Expect Miracles team is wrapping up their second annual Expect Miracles Peloton Corporate Showdown. The event includes 742 riders from forty-two different companies. The 2022 goal is to raise $75,000, which as of last night they were less than $1,000 away from.

"It's the first part of our larger distance challenge that we do each year," Heavey explains. "This is to kick off the challenge which will happen in May, and it's been hugely successful."

Heavey notes that in February the Samfund, an Expect Miracles subsidiary organization aimed at assisting young adult cancer survivors, will launch a financial literacy program aimed at cancer survivors between the ages of twenty-one and thirty-nine.

"People ask, 'Why young adults?'" says Heavey. "The reason we focus on young adults in terms of helping them [financially] is because young adults are the demographic most vulnerable to the financial toxicity that comes with a cancer diagnosis and treatment."

"They're not yet established in their careers," he adds, "and they might not have the savings that someone older would have to lean on, and they're also no longer under the roof of their parents. It's a very tenuous time in their lives. That's why my colleague Sam Watson created the Samfund in 2003."

As for the financial literacy offering, Heavey explains, "It's a new program, and the first course will be starting next month. We developed this over the past year in partnership with a nonprofit organization at the University of Pennsylvania called Bridges to Wealth."

"It will focus on providing basic financial literacy such as budgeting, credit cards, interest, and handling debt. The purpose is to try to help these young adult cancer survivors before they have to come to us to ask for help in the form of a grant."

There are fifty openings in the program, which has almost filled up after only two days of registration. The financial literacy program is entirely online and is what Heavey describes as a "virtual classroom."

In addition to the newsletter and the financial literacy program, the Expect Miracles team remains busy with a number of other charitable initiatives.

"After a two-year hiatus," Heavey notes, "we are excited to be hosting our seventh annual Expect Miracles in Manhattan charity event on March 22 at the Ziegfeld Ballroom."

He continues, "We are so fortunate to have the financial services industry's enthusiastic support of this cocktail gala which raises money for the Expect Miracles Research Fund at the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center."

This year's Expect Miracles in Manhattan honorees will include Columbia Threadneedle Investments, Margaret Flynn-Martin from Morgan Stanley Wealth Management, John Pavese from New York Life Investment Management, and Allison Saloy from Neuberger Berman. The honorees are notable, Heavey says, "for their leadership and support of our mission to bring hope to people impacted by cancer."

In addition, the organization's annual East Coast Classic golf tournament will be held in Plymouth, Massachusetts on June 9. The Atlantic Coast Classic golf tournament will be held in Bedminster, New Jersey on October 3. 

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