Mission: To empower individuals who have been affected by cancer and provide them with tools to connect with others who understand.
Background: Built in 2011 by web development and design team Squeaky Wheel Media, IHadCancer was founded by Mailet Lopez, the co-founder of an award-winning digital agency and a breast cancer survivor, and Anthony Del Monte, president and founder of Sqweaky Wheel. After Mailet was diagnosed with cancer at the age of 33, she decided to build a website focused on creating connections between people who had experienced cancer and could help others understand what they were going through. With more than 250,000 members globally, IHadCancer.com is one of the largest and most engaged cancer survivorship social networks in existence and received the Webby Award for Best Community Website in both 2013 and 2015.
Outstanding Web Features: The member-driven site allows individuals with experience of or with cancer to create a profile, share the type of cancer they've battled, and tell their stories. Visitors to the site can search for members by location, cancer type, year diagnosed, age, or gender. After a registered user has found someone with a similar experience or type of cancer, they have the option to connect and invite them to join their circle of friends, where, if both agree, they can share news and messages privately. The site also features discussion boards and lists of resources arranged by topic (advice & inspiration, awareness & education, caregivers, emotional support, finances, health & fitness, relationships, sex & fertility, survivorship, work & school, young adult cancer). In addition, through the "Dear Cancer" and "Get Inspired" portals, members have the option to create their own messages of courage and strength for others in the IHadCancer community. And for those who want to become involved through other means, the site accepts submissions from guest writers and bloggers.