By Ann Wornick
I am so fortunate to have had the opportunity to “Call-on Congress” with C3. It was my first time doing this sort of grassroots lobbying.
I am a three-year stage III colon cancer survivor. When I first thought about going to Washington, DC, I felt very intimidated. But I found a kinship with other C3 advocates from the minute I got to the hotel. We were all there to push for increased awareness and funding. We hit Capitol Hill with excitement, knowledge and purpose!
I met with my two US Senators, Bob Corker (R-TN) and Lamar Alexander (R-TN) and with the health aide to my US Representative, Marsha Blackburn (R-TN-07). We discussed federal funding for colorectal cancer research and prevention, and I felt like my voice was heard.
At the end of the day, the advocates all got together at the hotel for a celebration dinner. Everyone shared their high points of the day —we all had triumphant stories to share!
Two weeks before Call-on Congress, my friend Joni Foraker lost her battle with colon cancer. She had been my inspiration to get involved in advocacy and I carried her picture with me the whole time I was in DC. I asked that colorectal cancer be made a federal priority, not just for me, but for everyone, and especially for people like Joni, whose voice and spirit continues in each of us, and pushes us forward.