Fashion show to help Richton Park transplant patient

Chicago, Ill., May 8, 2012 – For Pamela Carpenter, every breath is a struggle. She’s waiting for a lifesaving lung transplant, but the costs are overwhelming. Volunteers are planning a fashion show fundraiser to help.

Carpenter was diagnosed with pulmonary fibrosis in 1992, after a prolonged cough and several bouts with pneumonia.The illness has permanently scarred her lungs. Doctors now say a double-lung transplant is critical to her survival, and she was added to the transplant waiting list earlier this year.

During this challenging time, Carpenter, 57, is thankful for the love and support of her husband, Donald; her four grandsons; her two sisters; her mother, Gloria; and her network of family and friends, who mean so much to her. She hates that she has to miss out on many activities, and she knows her new lungs will allow her to return to the family and volunteer activities that once filled her life.

Before her health declined, she loved going to the movies, being active in church and volunteering in her community. She is very compassionate and has always been one to put the needs of others ahead of her own, but right now, she’s the one who needs help.

A double-lung transplant costs approximately $800,000. Even with health coverage, she faces significant expenses related to the procedures. For the rest of her life, Carpenter will need follow-up care and daily anti-rejection medications. Post-transplant medications can be very costly, and they are as critical to her survival as the transplant itself.

She previously had a home-based business and helped care for a family member, but her health issues forced her to stop working, adding to her financial strain.

To overcome these financial challenges, Carpenter turned to the National Foundation for Transplants (NFT) for assistance. NFT is a nonprofit organization that helps transplant patients raise funds to pay for medical expenses.

“Pamela has spent the last 20 years fighting to breathe. I can’t even imagine what that must be like,” said Laura Hughes, NFT fundraising consultant. “While most of us take the act of breathing for granted, she doesn’t have that luxury. On top of that, she faces mounting medical expenses, which can be financially devastating. At NFT, we’re dedicated to helping Pamela raise the necessary funds so she can focus on her health without constantly worrying about the costs.”

Volunteers are planning “Pam’s New Breath of Life,” a fashion show and raffle, Sunday, May 20 from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. at Hair Nette Emporium, 1133 E. 95th St. Admission is $25 and includes entrance to the fashion show extravaganza, refreshments and raffles.

For more information, please contact Marnette James at 773-343-6320 or mjames5365@att.net. Tickets can be purchased at Hair Nette Emporium or by contacting James.

To make a donation in Carpenter’s honor, please visit www.transplants.org and select “Find an NFT Patient” to search for her. If you prefer to mail your contribution, please send your gift to the NFT Illinois Transplant Fund, 5350 Poplar Avenue, Suite 430, Memphis, TN 38119. Be sure to write “in honor of Pamela Carpenter” in the subject line.

About NFT
NFT is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization based in Memphis, Tenn. that has been helping transplant patients overcome financial obstacles since 1983. NFT provides fundraising expertise to transplant patients by organizing fundraising campaigns in the patients’ own communities. In the past 29 years, NFT’s fundraising campaigns have generated nearly $60 million to assist patients.

NFT currently assists more than 2,500 transplant candidates and recipients nationwide. For more information about NFT, please call 800-489-3863 or visit www.transplants.org.

###