photo of Gaithersburg Hilton

Save the Date: A Message of Hope Annual Gala (Videos)

A Message of Hope Cancer Fund will hold its 7th Annual Gala for Hope Saturday, May 17 at the Gaithersburg Hilton, 620 Perry Parkway, Gaithersburg. The non-profit organization was founded in 2008 by Meredith McNerney with the mission to help local families battling cancer. The gala features an elegant dinner and program, an open bar, music, dancing, a silent and live auction and an appearance by guest announcer Sarah Fraser, formerly of HOT 99.5 FM, along with DJ Lu-Han from DG Flounder’s firm, FM Entertainment. For more information and to purchase tickets, please visit A Message of Hope’s website.

A Message of Hope Cancer Fund is an all-volunteer-run local non-profit organization that provides direct monetary assistance to area cancer patients in financial need. Families in need are referred to the non-profit from local hospitals and cancer treatment facilities. The annual gala is the primary fundraiser of the year.

The non-profit was founded in 2008 by Meredith McNerney, a young cancer survivor who launched the fund when her family and friends helped her to organize the first gala, in celebration of her birthday and one year since her diagnosis with a rare form of cancer known as Merkel Cell Carcinoma. Meredith and her husband, Mark McNerney, were both public school teachers and felt fortunate to have an excellent health insurance plan, but nevertheless learned quickly how the bills can pile up for anyone battling cancer, with expenses such as medical co-payments, prescriptions, travel to treatments, and lost time at work. Meredith wanted to turn her own ordeal into something positive and thus the organization and the fund was launched, Since its inception, A Message of Hope Cancer Fund – a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization – has raised approximately $800,000 and provided much-needed financial assistance to some 175 cancer patients and families in Maryland and the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area.

A Message of Hope Cancer Fund is currently seeking event sponsors for the gala and donated items for the silent and live auctions, as well as corporate or individual sponsors for reserved VIP tables and other exclusive event sponsorship opportunities. For sponsorship information please visit A Message of Hope’s website online or email

Message of Hope board member Darlene Melkonian talks about the upcoming fundraiser in the Comcast Newsmakers video:

Meet A Message of Hope founder Meredith McNerney in this video about her battle against cancer


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