Ruth M. Gonzales-Medellin
Executive Director for WINGS
What is your role at your organization, and what does it entail?
My focus and commitment are to ensure those served are provided immediate access to medical care and to improve health literacy, raising awareness about risk factors and early detection to reduce fear about seeking care for breast concerns. I am fiscally responsible for the overall management, program execution, fund development, community outreach, and establishing medical and community partnerships to ensure participants receive quality care.
Describe your organization’s mission in your own words.
Women Involved In Nurturing, Giving, Sharing, Inc. (WINGS) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit and health and human services organization providing essential, no-cost comprehensive breast cancer care to the underserved, under-insured, and uninsured community living at or below the 200% Federal Poverty Guideline; have been denied assistance through Medicaid, county indigent care programs, and have no other resources by which to access care. These individuals would surely die without treatment. Most often, WINGS is their only option for life-saving treatment and care.
WINGS provides three programs by which participants are supported: WINGS I is for patients that need screening or have been diagnosed with breast cancer and need full treatment coverage, including chemotherapy, radiation, labs, physician visits, and surgical procedures; WINGS II offers follow-up care for uninsured breast cancer survivors for five years following remission; WINGS for Life is a survivorship program; WINGS serves of 650+ women annually.
What is a common misconception about your organization or the mission you serve?
Two noted misconceptions are: 1) WINGS is a funding resource for all female cancer care needs, 2) WINGS is an insurance company. WINGS provides no-cost breast cancer care programs and services. With the help of donor support ($1.3M annual budget), WINGS is able to break all financial barriers for individuals who have no financial resources to secure treatment.
What does $100 support when giving to your organization?
$100.00 in support provides patient care and support, including medications, labs, scans, educational materials, and PPE.
What is an upcoming way to get involved at WINGS?
October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. We encourage everyone – individuals, businesses, religious groups, schools, clubs, and the overall community to learn about breast cancer care and screening. WINGS partners with third-party donors to host fundraising activities across the City. Contributions can be raised by retail sales, hosting third-party fundraisers, online campaigns, in-kind gifts, and direct donations. WINGS receives donations online at our website www.texaswings.org.