Breast Cancer Survivor Pays it Forward - People Helping People Series

Friday, October 27 at 03:20 PM
Category: People Helping People

Oct. 27, 2017 – When Bobbie Jo Sparks was near her lowest, four words changed her life.

“Call Angie with BCAP,” Sparks remembers being told.

BCAP* is the acronym for Breast Cancer Assistance Program, a 501(c)(3) charity that assists women affected by breast cancer. Sparks is a breast cancer survivor who in 2012 was diagnosed with cancer, then lost her mother and her job within a span of about two months. 

On top of that, Sparks had three children she feared wouldn’t get a Christmas due to all of the hardship. After taking the advice to call BCAP, however, Sparks got a much-needed boost.
 
BCAP, led by another breast cancer survivor, Angie Walters, paid the Sparks family’s rent and utilities. It even made sure the family had a Christmas dinner and gifts for Sparks’ children.
 
“Not only did they help my family,” Sparks said, “but they became family.”
 
Walters is the 24th person to be featured in Arvest Bank’s People Helping People video series. The series is designed to celebrate individuals in the communities Arvest serves who are uniquely making a difference.

Walters’ determination to help breast cancer patients started when she was receiving treatment for her own illness. She heard fellow patients worry about meeting basic financial needs, and eventually formed BCAP to help address that issue.
 
Now, BCAP provides an average of about $1,500 to several cancer patients each month. The money comes from fundraisers such as the Pink Carpet Survivor Brunch and Fashion Show held earlier this fall.
 
Sparks, who now holds a fundraiser of her own to help support BCAP, knows firsthand how the organization helps those with seemingly overwhelming financial needs. After participating in the fashion show, Sparks knows about other benefits being associated with the group brings.
 
“I felt beautiful,” Sparks said. “I felt beautiful in my skin because all of those people allowed me to feel that way. Once I made my round and everybody is applauding and they know my story, it was amazing. ...You felt amazing. You felt like you were 10 feet tall.”
 
About Arvest Bank
Arvest Bank operates more than 250 bank branches in Arkansas, Oklahoma, Missouri and Kansas through a group of 16 locally managed banks, each with its own board and management team. These banks serve customers in more than 120 communities, with extended weekday banking hours at many locations. Arvest also provides a wide range of banking services including loans, deposits, treasury management, credit cards, mortgage loans and mortgage servicing. Arvest is an Equal Housing Lender and Member FDIC.
 
Links marked with * go to a third-party site not operated or endorsed by Arvest Bank, an FDIC-insured institution.
Tags: Oklahoma, People Helping People, Tulsa
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