Patients First (PF) was incorporated in 1999 as a 501(c)3 non-profit, to serve as a forum for patients to have a voice in the health care arena, and to ensure that they have the resources to be actively engaged in the healing process. Since its inception, PF has been involved with patient advocacy efforts at the state and national level, has been instrumental in developing a state-wide cancer alliance, and has conducted numerous educational programs and conferences for survivors and cancer organizations

In working with survivors and care providers, it quickly became apparent that patients were often unaware of the resources and support that was available within the community. The intense focus on surviving the rigors of treatment was often overwhelming and there seemed to be little time to focus on what it meant to live with cancer.

There arose a need for a venue, separate from the hospital setting, where patients and their loved ones could remove themselves from the immediacy of treatment and focus on reclaiming control of their lives. They needed a common space where information was easily accessible to all patients, regardless of where they received treatment or where they were along the cancer journey. They needed somewhere within the community to connect to the resources and support necessary to become actively engaged in living with cancer.  The Cancer Survivors Park was conceived to serve those needs.

The purpose of the Cancer Survivors Park is to provide a place of respite and rejuvenation, inspiration, education, hope, and celebration for anyone touched by cancer.

As efforts to design, raise funds for, and construct the physical space of the park near completion, PF has redirected more of its resources toward solidifying the inspirational and educational features and programs that will be contained within it.

As a result, the Board changed the name of the organization and refined its mission statement to more clearly reflect those goals.  Thus, PF is now the Cancer Survivors Park Alliance (CSPA) whose vision is simply to change the way we live with cancer. The Cancer Survivors Park Alliance seeks to serve as a catalyst for collaborative activities that engage, educate, empower, and enhance the lives of anyone touched by cancer, and to ensure the sustainability of the CSP as the central venue for carrying out that mission.

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