2024 Beacon of Hope Award

Congratulations, Lydia!

The BCAN community has spoken and we have a winner! The recipient of the Bladder Cancer Advocacy Network’s 2024 Beacon of Hope awards in Lydia Saravis.

Lydia is a bladder cancer survivor and leads an online support group that is open to all neobladder patients.

Lydia Saravis

One of people who chose Lydia said of her, “[She] has literally been a beacon of hope for hundreds of neobladder patients having founded and run the neobladder support group for over a decade. An impossible to comprehend concept is broken down and explained monthly in a forum that Lydia curates and monitors to keep informative and safe for all who attend. I can think of no one more selfless and giving to the community than Lydia. Keep shining your light Lydia and thank you from the bottom of my neo!””

Other deserving nominees:

Two others were finalists for the 2024 Beacon of Hope award: Bill Russell, a bladder cancer survivor, and Dr. Jonathan Wright, the medical director of the University of Washington Urology Clinic and a UW professor of urology.

Bill Russell

Bill is a bladder cancer survivor and has been active in helping fellow patients and survivors for years. He has also been an organizer of the Pittsburgh Walk to End Bladder Cancer. One person who nominated Bill said, “Bill became my ostomy buddy. Big of heart, long on patience, and giving of gentle encouragement always at the right time and perfect tenor… Bill was always a positive force…Bill is a lover of life and a person who loves to give back.”

Dr. Jonathan Wright

One of the people who nominated Dr. Wright said of him, “Dr. Wright wowed us with his availability and engagement back in 2011 when we were going through the worst. He gave my husband his cell number. He visited with us for two hours in the hospital on Christmas Day. He keeps wowing us with his continued kindness and determination now, 13 years later. Dr. Jonathan Wright is our embodiment of a Beacon of Hope”

What is the Beacon of Hope award?

For several weeks, bladder cancer community members nominated their beacons – that special someone who has been a light in the darkness that bladder cancer can bring. For three weeks in May 2024, members of the bladder cancer community voted for one of the three finalists, the person whom they believed is most deserving. Thank you to all who voted.

Meet the 2023 Beacon of Hope award winner.