Even as she was dying from her third bout with cancer, Wendy Wilkie was pushing to establish her dream — a non-profit organization that would provide nutritious food to cancer patients in the Tarrant County area.
Sue Austin, a personal friend and president of Cuisine for Healing, the organization Wilkie visualized, said Wilkie was one of the bravest people she has ever met. Austin said, “She was full of energy, joy and life until just a few days before she passed. What an inspiration to behold.”
After her death, Austin and other friends of Wilkie vowed they would turn her vision into reality and became the founding board of Cuisine for Healing. Austin became the leader of the organization, which turned 5 in October.
The organization’s core activity is its Outreach Food Program, which prepares and delivers fresh, healthy Cuisine for Healing-certified meals at no cost to qualifying cancer patients in the Tarrant County area.
In 2012, Cuisine for Healing provided nearly 7,000 meals. Volunteers drove more than 1,300 hours and 18,000 miles to deliver them. This past September alone, 993 meals were prepared and delivered. But there also were 22 clients on the waiting list due to limited funds.
Anne Felps is one who receives the meals and spoke at the 5th annual fundraiser — A Night on the Wilkie Way — Oct. 5, two days before undergoing surgery.
“When the thief comes to steal, kill and destroy, he never comes in a dignified manner. I first heard this phrase the Sunday after I received a diagnosis of rectal cancer. Make no mistake, the purpose of cancer is to kill you, and it’s definitely not dignified,” Felps said.
Cuisine for Healing’s next fundraiser is “A Foodie Feast” on Sunday, Feb. 9, at Mission Restaurant Supply, 2524 White Settlement Road.