For the past year cancer patients being treated at Parkview Cancer Institute have received mugs painted by local residents. The mugs have different colors and designs but they all share the same word and that word is “Believe”.
Lola Miller received one of the free “Believe” mugs in September. “I thank the people that made it so much,” said Miller. A bladder cancer survivor, 83-year old Miller is now battling pancreatic cancer. She told us the mug she received put a smile on her face.
“Believe Mugs were started by a lady with stage four colon cancer,” said Tracy Busch, Oncology Navigation Manager at the Parkview Cancer Institute. “The mission behind the mug is to give patients encouragement and support and to let them know that somebody from Bisque It Pottery painted a mug especially for a patient.”
Believe Mugs are painted at the Bisque It Pottery and Painting Studio at 7605 Coldwater Road in Fort Wayne. “The mugs are part of the Believe Big project,” said Shannon McClure, who heads the project at Bisque It. “Believe Big is a nationwide nonprofit organization. They help patients face, fight and overcome cancer. One of the ways they do that is by putting hand-painted mugs into the hands of cancer patients.”
Dan and Becky Greenwood are two Fort Wayne residents who use their artistic skills to paint the mugs. “I think we all would like to do something to help cancer patients and maybe this will help them feel better when they have a cup of tea or coffee,” said Becky.
“The only word you’re allowed to put on the mug is the word believe,” said Dan. “I think that says it all. You have to believe that you’re going to survive and that things will be better.”
Plain mugs are shipped to Bisque It Pottery and people go in during regular business hours to paint them. It cost $15 to paint a Believe Mug. “Once they’re done painting we have to glaze and fire the mug to finish it,” said McClure. “The whole process takes about three days. Then we pack them up and take them to Parkview so they can give them to patients. I believe we’ve given Parkview over 200 mugs this year.”
“So many people are affected by this disease and to bring somebody joy and encouragement through their journey means a lot to the patients and to us,” said Busch.
On Sunday, October 14 from 5 to 7 p.m. Bisque It will hold a Believe Big fundraiser at its studio on Coldwater Road. Part of the proceeds go to local cancer research. “It’s only $20 and we’re giving half of it back to Believe Big,” said McClure.The $20 registration fee includes a Believe Mug to paint that evening, a sunflower token of appreciation and a cause ribbon magnet to paint. Half of the registration cost will go directly to Believe Big to help cancer patients. Those who register are also asked to submit a photo and the name of a cancer fighter they would like to honor the evening of the event. Refreshments will be served and there will be door prizes and music from Will Curtain. Go to the Bisque It Pottery Painting Studio website or call (260) 490-0506 for more information.