Southern Alberta Myeloma Patient Society

SAMPS Beginnings

 

SAMPS BEGINNINGS

Our first president, Ms. Carol Westberg was diagnosed on September 28, 2004 with Multiple Myeloma. Question was what that diagnosis was.  She was on this journey for about a year when she was put in touch with another Myelomic Mr. Jerry Dziuba ,but sadly has passed away. Several meetings were held but interest in forming a group was not expressed. In discussion with Dr. Bahlis he stated that he would support the startup of a support group and was very encouraging

Carol read a couple of quotations that inspired her, One by Ann Frank …”How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.  One quote by Gandhi...”Be the change you want to see”.

Carol worked tersely printing and handing out business cards, contacting any Myelomic she could find and contacting the hematologists in Calgary along with other Myeloma organizations like Myeloma Canada and International Myeloma Foundation. Meetings were held at Wellspring Calgary, #4 Parkdale Cresc. N.W.  Calgary. The first meeting was held June 14, 2007. After 8 months the group started meeting the second Thursday of the month on a regular basis. Some of the initial key volunteers that assisted Carol with her passion were:

Norma Gilbert, Catherine Suzanne, Peter and Nancy Chivilio (web Site), Landis and Sharon Krause, Katie, Bill and Marylyn Holt, Dave and Kathryn Hall and Reanne Booker.

It was Carol’s passion and involvement in all aspects of getting people to appreciate that this Myeloma thing was very important and a debilitating disease.  With the assistance of the Calgary patient society, the first ever patient education day was held on October 26, 2007.

Assistance was provided by Loring Gimbel, Patient Educator at TBCC and Mr. Aldo Del Col, Founder and Chairman of the Board of Directors for Myeloma Canada, Dr. Nizar Bahlis (Assistant Professor, University of Calgary Foothills Medical Center) from CALGARY, Dr. V RajKumar from the Mayo Clinic, and Ms. Jean Westphal, IMF nurse from Minnesota,  Cheryl Howe, nurse from TBCC Calgary.

If you are struggling with the disease, please come out to a support group meeting where we have speakers, open discussion and social nights. You Never have to Feel Alone.

Thankyou Carol for your tireless work in keeping everyone involved Thanks to her family for the years of support they have offered. SAMPS was incorporated on July 27, 2009 as a registered charity organization.