A Cure In Sight™ held its first Eye Believe Survivorship Seminar at the Disney World Coronado Springs Convention Center in Orlando, Florida, Nov 28th through Dec 2nd. 102 patients, supporters and family members were registered to attend the event made possible from sponsorships by Aura Biosciences, Castle Biosciences and Immunocore.
A session led by Dr. Sato, and another led by Stephan Kurtenbach, provided updates on research and advances in ocular melanoma treatments. Dr. Afshar discussed the effects of radiation to the eye after primary treatments. Aura Biosciences updated their exciting advancements for a not-to-distant less-invasive ocular tumor treatment. ‘Cancer and Careers’ led a session on dealing with your career after your diagnosis. Anne Osborn and Carole Oliver led sessions to help deal with the emotional aspects of ocular melanoma and provided coping mechanisms for managing stress. Sessions also included nutrition by Ann Fonfa, and Prosthetics 101 led by Anna Jefferson of Carolina Eye. Dr. Sato also gave an update on the possible clusters of ocular melanoma. And, finally, an informative Q+A panel discussion was held with patient questions being taken by Dr. Sato, Dr. Patel, and Dr. Eroglu.
There was plenty of time for fun and connecting with fellow patients and their families. The welcome reception on Wednesday allowed everyone to get to know each other before the start of the seminar. Some families enjoyed the parks and explored Orlando during the off time and some joined us for Happy Hour at the Rix in the hotel and at Edisons in Disney Springs.
The final evening featured a gala to celebrate A Cure In Sight’s 5th anniversary and the close of the seminar. Attendees enjoyed dinner, dancing, and a special visit from Mickey Mouse. Fun was had by all and many new friendships and memories were made.
The highlight of the evening was the presentation of a gift by the Neff family. Karla Neff’s husband, Eric, was diagnosed with ocular melanoma. Karla began making and selling earrings as a fundraiser to help find a cure. In the past several months she raised over $3000. With a special fundraiser from friends and students at the Blue Springs School District, where Eric Neff is Assistant Principal, the amount increased. Karla and their son, Riley, presented a check to A Cure In Sight for $5,000. A gracious gift and a fitting amount to celebrate the 5th anniversary of A Cure In Sight.
A Cure In Sight would like to thank everyone who worked so hard to make this event a success. And, a very special thanks to our sponsors for making it possible. But mostly we thank those who came to learn, tell their stories, connect with others, and make some magical memories.