Denver Actors Fund in Action: Faith Ford

Faith Ford starred as Tracy Turnblad in Town Hall Arts Center’s production of ‘Hairspray.’ Photo by Becky Toma.

 

Aid recipient: Loveland native Faith Ford is a graduate of Thompson Valley High School and the University of Northern Colorado. She played Tracy Turnblad in the Town Hall Arts Center’s recent production of “Hairspray,” and she will return there next month as an ensemble member in the Green Day musical “American Idiot.” She previously performed Little Theatre of the Rockies’ “Sister Act,” “The Addams Family” and “Dogfight” in Greeley.

Her medical story: Faith began to experience issues with her throat a year ago, which eventually led to diagnosis of thyroid cancer at only age 24. Surgery to remove her tonsils, adenoids and lymph nodes left Faith with a staggering post-insurance, out-of-pocket hospital bill of $5,600. And she now faces a second surgery in October to remove the thyroid and take an injection of radioactive iodine that should remove all remaining cancer cells. After that, the prognosis is good. Faith will have to take an (expensive) daily pill for life that replicates thyroid function, but her singing voice is unaffected, and she should otherwise face no further medical complications. Still, when all is said and done, Faith has been told to expect her share of the medical expenses to exceed $20,000. And she’ll be out of work from her day job as a waitress for two months while recovering from the next surgery.

How we are helping: The Denver Actors Fund’s board of directors has voted to pay $5,000 of Faith’s current expenses, which represents the largest single initial payout to any of the more than 80 Colorado theatre artists the DAF has now helped. That’s the good news. The bad news is she still faces $15,000 in real and eventual costs, in addition to two months of lost wages.

How you can help us help more: If you would like to direct a specific donation to help Faith pay down her existing and coming expenses, simply mail checks in any amount made out to Denver Actors Fund (with Faith Ford’s name written in the topic field), to P.O. Box 11182, Denver, CO 80212. Or use this donation link. If you use the online option, be sure to designate that your donation is a targeted donation to Faith Ford. (She will receive 100 percent of your donation.) Otherwise, your donation will be applied to the replenishment of the Denver Actors Fund’s general fund.

Update: Targeted donations totaling $120 to help Faith Ford have brought the total amount of DAF assistance for Faith to $5,120 through Aug. 30.

A message from Faith: “When I went in for what I thought would be a painful but common procedure and came out knowing I had been diagnosed with cancer as a young and healthy woman, my life did a complete 180. I was terrified knowing this was a cancer that could directly affect my voice. Theatre performance and singing have given my life more happiness and taught me more than any other thing. I never want to give it up. There has been an overwhelming amount of love and encouragement from all ranges of the world, many of those being a part of the theatre community of Colorado. I received many nudges shortly after publicly sharing my news to contact The Denver Actors Fund and ask for financial assistance. I am not one to ask for help, but I knew I couldn’t face this alone. When I was told the board had voted to grant me $5,000 I was overwhelmed. I would have been happy to receive any amount, but this grant has given me peace of mind. I have a long road ahead with surgeries, recovery, lost work time and many more bills, but the help and comfort I have received so far is heartwarming. I am so grateful to the Denver Actors Fund and everyone who is a part of the theatre community and supports live theatre and the Denver Actors Fund. Every person makes a difference no matter how small you may feel your impact is. The bigger picture is that you are actually probably changing someone’s life, as you have changed mine, and that is a gift.”

The Denver Actors Fund has now made more than $255,000 available to Colorado artists in medical need. If you would to help us replenish our general fund, simply mail checks made out to The Denver Actors Fund to P.O. Box 11182, Denver, CO, 80212. Or use this donation link.

Read testimonials from other Denver Actors Fund beneficiaries here

Note: At the Denver Actors Fund, anonymity of aid recipients is presumed and fully protected, unless and until the recipient chooses to have his or her story told.


HOW YOU CAN HELP US REPLENISH:

To DONATE the Denver Actors Fund, please CLICK HERE (with our humble thanks)


ABOUT THE DENVER ACTORS FUND:


Video above: The Denver Actors Fund receives the Colorado Theatre Guild’s 2016 Community Impact Award.

The Denver Actors Fund is a modest source of immediate, situational relief when members of the local theater community find themselves in medical need. In addition to $255,000 in financial relief, a team of more than 60 Denver Actors Fund volunteers has offered good neighborly assistance to more than 100 beneficiaries including meal prep and delivery, child care, transportation, errands, construction, pet-sitting and more. For more information, visit our web site at DenverActorsFund.Org.


HOW TO APPLY FOR AID:

To apply for Denver Actors Fund aid: Fill out this brief online form here


MORE WAYS TO HELP:

DONATE BY MAIL:

Send checks made out to the Denver Actors Fund to:
P.O. Box 11182
Denver, CO 80212

VOLUNTEER:

Ever thought about taking a more active role in the Denver Actors Fund? Click here for more information

COME TO OUR EVENTS:

Denver Actors Fund Film Series: Our next Denver Actors Fund film screening at the Alamo Drafthouse Sloan’s Lake will be a “West Side Story” singalong at 7 p.m. Monday, Aug. 20, hosted by Traci J. Kern and Ryan Belinak. Reserve your preferred seat here.

Project Careaoke Launch Party for Denver Actors Fund, Sept. 9: Please join us for a fun karaoke (and much more) fundraiser hosted by Project Careaoke that could represent the biggest infusion of funds to the Denver Actors Fund in our history. And it costs only $12 to attend. There will be competitive karaoke, Jayson Payne from JAMMIN’ DJs, live music with Float Like A Buffalo, a local artist showcase featuring live art, and a silent live auction. Starts at 5 p.m. at The Venue. located at 1451 Cortez St. in Denver (at Highway 36 and Pecos Street). Please come, and spread the word! Purchase your tickets here

‘Miscast’ returns Sept. 17: “Miscast,” which is presented each year by Robert Michael Sanders as a benefit for The Denver Actors Fund, is an opportunity for local performers to sing songs and act out scenes they would never … ever! … get cast to perform on any legit stage. Think gender-bending, race-bending and age-bending. Odd couples and mixed groups. Wrong is oh so right. “Miscast” has evolved over the years into one of the biggest nights of the year in the Colorado theatre community – and it is a really good show. “Miscast 2018” will be held Sept. 17 at a new location: The Mizel Arts and Culture Center. Tickets onsale soon.

VISIT OUR ONLINE MERCH STORE:

Click here to see how you can buy DAF products such as T-shirts, key chains, puzzles and much more