Category Archives: Volunteering

Information about vounteer opportunities and stories from volunteers.

BCPC’s Nita Zachow Receives Giving Your Best Award

Congratulations to Breast Cancer Prevention Coalition (BCPC) President and Executive Board member Nita Zachow on receiving the June, 2013 WJBF News Channel 6 “Giving Your Best” award.  WJBF selects one local winner each month from nominations submitted by the community.  Nita is featured in an article and video on the WJBF website. Winners are also honored at the Annual Giving Your Best Jefferson Awards Banquet.

Nita was nominated by her sister, BCPC Executive Board Member Celeste Spence in recognition for Nita’s tireless efforts to raise money for cancer research and to educate people about how healthy lifestyles can help in the fight against cancer.  Founding the BCPC was a key part of those efforts.

Congratulations Nita!

Nita Zachow (center) with BCPC members Sherry Brooks and Nicole Caldwell

“Giving Your Best” Winner Nita Zachow (center) with BCPC members Sherry Brooks and Nicole Caldwell.


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BCPC’s Karen Eckert Receives Giving Your Best Award

Karen Eckert accepting "Giving Your Best" award from WJBF News Channel 6's Jenna Lee Wright.

Karen Eckert, right, accepts “Giving Your Best” award from WJBF News Channel 6’s Jenna Lee Wright.

The Breast Cancer Prevention Coalition (BCPC) congratulates BCPC Vice-President and Executive Board member Karen Eckert on receiving the November, 2012 WJBF News Channel 6 “Giving Your Best” award.  WJBF selects one local winner each month from nominations submitted by the community.  Karen is featured in an article and video on the WJBF website. Winners are also honored at the Annual Giving Your Best Jefferson Awards Banquet.

BCPC President Nita Zachow nominated Karen, citing Karen’s dedication and fundraising efforts, on top of numerous other commitments.

As a BCPC board member, Karen is Nita’s right hand, organizing meetings, serving as a liaison, and leading several fund-raising activities. Karen is the coordinator of a very successful (and huge) “Find the Cure” educational and fundraising program that takes place in local middle and high schools during October’s Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

One of Karen’s significant contributions was the 2011 production of a wellness video, Breast Cancer Prevention for Teens.  The goal of the video, and one of Karen’s personally, is to send middle and high school students the message that good nutrition and living a healthy lifestyle can help prevent breast cancer and other diseases.   Karen wrote, directed, and produced the video which features TV anchor Jennie Montgomery and local physician Dr. Robert Pendergrast.   The video is now shown each October in over 20 schools to thousands of teens.

Karen volunteers weekly at the Georgia Health Sciences University Cancer Center where you will generally find her in The Image Boutique.  There, she assists ladies with purchasing bras, wigs, jewelry, hats, and scarves. Most importantly, she offers a ready smile and makes everyone feel good. Karen also helps in the Infusion area, offering patients a warm blanket, a drink or snack.

As a member of Aiken Master Gardener Association (AMGA), Karen volunteers for AMGA projects including “Meet A Master Gardener” and “Rent A Master Gardener”.  She also coordinates information and speakers for her community garden club, The Mount Vintage Plantation Transplants.

When asked about Karen’s nomination, Nita Zachow said “I nominated Karen for the “Giving Your Best” award because she is one of the most competent, dedicated, caring ladies I know. Karen is most deserving of this award and I am most pleased that she has been selected as the winner!”

Congratulations, Karen! The award is well-deserved.

BCPC members and friends with Karen

BCPC members and friends share Karen’s special moment

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Meet BCPC Member Linda Nidiffer

On Tuesdays at the GHSU Cancer Center, you can’t miss seeing Linda Nidiffer. She is wearing her one-of-a-kind apron, toting a huge basket full of home-baked goodies and another basket with a beautiful assortment of colored yarn for her current knitting projects.  Energy is flowing and a huge smile covers her face as she enters the Infusion Room to encourage and add a touch of humor for the cancer patients. Her close friend, Jean Morson helps by baking cookies and muffins. When Linda is not giving out goodies, she is talking and knitting with patients.

Linda Nidiffer in a favorite apron

BCPC volunteer Linda Nidiffer stands ready for “work” in the infusion center

New patients are in for a pleasant surprise and veteran patients readily motion for her to come see them. The nurses appreciate Linda for many reasons. She helps patients relax and feel happier by bringing them a warm blanket along with water, sodas and snacks.

Linda’s love for people is inborn. She once stayed several weeks with a friend who was recovering from breast cancer. After seeing the friend undergo surgery and chemo treatments, Linda felt a tug at her heart to volunteer at the Cancer Center.

Linda, a retired English teacher, currently writes a weekly article for the Edgefield Times. She is also an avid knitter, and hosts a “Stitch and Bitch” group at her home each month.  In addition to their own projects, this circle of friends have knitted hundreds of caps for kids, cancer patients, and numerous organizations.

Linda played golf for several years until a cranky back made it impossible to play on a regular basis. Visiting with grandchildren, taking trips, attending Augusta State basketball games, playing bridge, caring for her kitty and being a good wife makes her life complete. Linda’s quick wit makes her a favorite person in the community.

Linda and her husband, Tom, have two grown children and two grandchildren and live at beautiful Mt. Vintage.

Thank you, Linda for giving of yourself and putting others first!

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BCPC Wants Your Story to Share with Others

BCPC member Celeste Spence is leading the effort to set up a BCPC Speaker’s Bureau and assemble a Testimony Book(let).   Speakers will be asked to share their “cancer stories” with small and large groups of folks who are interested in cancer research and prevention. BCPC will use the Testimony Books with newly diagnosed cancer patients, relatives and friends who need to see “hope” and reality from people who have walked the walk and faced the enemy, cancer.

We encourage anyone who has experienced cancer personally, or has shared a cancer diagnosis with a loved one, to write about the experience and e-mail it to Celeste at  All stories will be edited by a team of English teachers and will be printed grammatically correct. The length of one’s story can range from a few paragraphs to 5-10 pages.

Please send us your “Cancer Story”  today.

E-mail your story to

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Filed under Breast Cancer Awareness, Mentoring, Stories of Hope, Volunteering

BCPC Volunteer News

Marliyn Opens Appreciation GiftOn Wednesday, April 13th, BCPC volunteers at the MCG Cancer Center were given appreciation gifts and a wonderful luncheon. BCPC’s Cancer Center volunteers include Linda Nidiffer, Mary Beth Smith, Jacque Tarquin, Marilynn Morguson, Michelle Randrup, Nancy Steinhaus, Nancy Evans, Suzanne Allen, Karen Eckert and Nita Zachow.

BCPC board member Nita Zachow said that she personally wants to thank each one of our dedicated volunteers for giving of their time to help others.

Mary Beth with Appreciation GiftMore Volunteer Opportunities

The Cancer Center has seen a tremendous increase in patients over the past few months. We are in need of someone who would like to be a “greeter” and give patients information. The hours needed for this volunteer service is 9:15 until 12:15 on Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays. Please let Nita know if you can help. It will be greatly appreciated!

Plans are underway to expand the program for mentoring to newly diagnosed cancer patients. More details will be given in a

Nita with appreciation gift

few weeks. If you are interested in being a mentor, please contact Nita.

Special Thanks

A special thanks to Michelle Randrup for keeping BCPC’s blog updated. She is a marvelous webmaster!


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