NASHVILLE (WSMV) - The effects of the pandemic have taken its toll on many organizations, cutting into how much people are donating, even to how groups can fundraise to begin with, even major charities have expressed worries this time could have lasting harmful effects for the people they help.

The pandemic upended organizations like the American Cancer Society who typically holds multiple events, like Making Strides, Relay for Life, the Best Dressed Ball and more throughout the year gathering thousands of people to raise millions of dollars to help patients.

“In the first time of American cancer society’s over a hundred years of being around, we’re at risk of losing funding for research,” said Lindsey Langley who is the Executive Director of the American Cancer Society Tennessee.

Where the ACS was able to bring in more than $750 million in 2019 to provide help to cancer patients and their families. This year donations have been cut by as much as 40%.

That the American Cancer Society is currently funding over $13 million in research based grants across the state of Tennessee . 

“We are obviously having challenges raising funds because we can’t do in person events,” she said.  

“If we do not continue to fund research, we’re going to see a lifetime you know of generation that will be impacted by cancer.”

But it is more than research affected, ACS provides care and accomodations like through the Hope Lodge, giving patients and their families who travel for cancer treatments a free place to stay. However, the lodge has been closed to patents since March when the pandemic started to ensure safety from COVID-19.

“Even if we don’t have patients in the lodge like right now, we still have to keep it going,” said Langley.  

ACS is relying on virtual fundraising through the pandemic, moving events like this year’s Best Dressed Ball online, hoping to get even more involved with helping families facing cancer.

“One thing that we know is that during COVID-19, cancer has not stopped,” said Langley.  

This year the Best Dressed Ball will feature a virtual writers round concert featuring Brett Young on December 10. Those who donate to the American Cancer Society through this link here will also receive a ticket to attend the virtual event, the money will go back to helping fund cancer research and continue providing the lifesaving care for cancer patients.

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