A Cancer Survivor Is Donating Profits From Her Jewelry Company to Mass General
At age 31, Sally Waite was seven months pregnant and getting ready to launch a jewelry company with her aunt, also named Sally. Then she got news that changed her life: She had stage IV colon cancer.
“The truth is that it was just devastating,” Waite says. “Everyone asked me, ‘Are you angry that this happened to you when you’re so young and you’re about to have this new baby?’ All I could say was, ‘I’m not angry at all, I’m just absolutely heartbroken.'”
Fast-forward two years, and Waite, now 33, is cancer-free and mother to a healthy baby boy named Sam—and channeling her experiences into the jewelry company she and her aunt were forced to put on hold.
Sally Jane, which launched in August, is no longer just about accessories. Waite says the company will donate $1 from each sale to organizations close to her heart: Massachusetts General Hospital, where she was treated, and Jin Shin Jyutsu, an Arizona-based organization that practices a variation of acupressure.
Waite says the majority of each dollar will go to Mass General’s immunotherapy research and to the Friends of Mass General Cancer Center program, which offers alternative therapies like massage and acupuncture to patients. The remainder will go to Jin Shin Jyutsu. “When I was going through treatment, my aunt is a Jin Shin Jyutsu practitioner and she treated me five days a week, and it was unbelievably helpful for me to be able to get through all of my treatment,” she says. “We also want to eradicate the disease, and immunotherapy is so promising.”
Beyond its philanthropic bent, Waite says Sally Jane’s bracelets and necklaces—all emblazoned with the company’s signature bee—can serve as a symbol of strength and courage to those who wear them.
“It’s just something that you can give to someone to remind them that they have the strength within them to get through whatever challenge they’re facing; that’s really our goal,” Waite says. “We want our bee to be a symbol of strength.”
Sally Jane jewelry is priced between $43 and $72 and can be purchased online at sallyjane.net.