Debbie's Dream Foundation: Curing Stomach Cancer Names Melani Vincelli Volunteer of the Year Award Recipient


Debbie's Dream Foundation: Curing Stomach Cancer (DDF) presented its 2017 Volunteer of the Year award to South New Jersey chapter founder and leader Melani Vincelli. The award recognizes an outstanding individual for achievements in advocacy, volunteerism, chapter development, patient support and other activities in support of the mission of DDF.

Vincelli is an eight-year stage IV stomach cancer survivor. In December 2009, following a series of operations and treatments, she was pronounced cancer free and has remained so since then. A New Jersey native, she became involved with DDF after meeting President and Founder, Debbie Zelman, in 2011 on the set of the Dr. Oz Show. Vincelli volunteers with DDF in many capacities: as a mentor to stomach cancer patients; an advocate for increased research funding; and a participant and speaker at DDF educational events. She also serves as a voice in her local community and nationally to raise awareness about stomach cancer and DDF and is working on a fundraising event in New Jersey.

"Melani has been a really strong advocate for gastric cancer," said Zelman, who is also a stage IV stomach cancer survivor for more than 9 years. "From the beginning, Melani has been a wonderful mentor in our Patient Resource Education Program, she's been on two Symposium patient panels, served as a representative on two patient advisory boards, and was a guest speaker at a pharmaceutical company. We truly appreciate her passion and dedication toward helping us achieve our mission and goals as a DDF Chapter Leader. I am honored to have presented her with this award."

The award was presented during the 2017 DDF Capitol Hill Stomach Cancer Advocacy Day on February 26, 2017.

For more information about Debbie's Dream Foundation, visit

About Debbie's Dream Foundation: Curing Stomach Cancer

Debbie's Dream Foundation: Curing Stomach Cancer (DDF) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to raising awareness about gastric cancer, advancing funding for research, and providing education and support internationally to patients, families, and caregivers. Debbie's Dream Foundation seeks as its ultimate goal to make the cure for stomach cancer a reality.

DDF was founded in 2009 by Debbie Zelman after she was diagnosed with stage IV incurable stomach cancer in 2008 and given only weeks to live. DDF now has a Scientific and Medical Advisory Board of world renowned doctors and chapters throughout the United States and in Canada and Germany. Considered a "Super Survivor," Debbie is still receiving chemotherapy 9 1/2 years later and is thrilled to be able to watch her three children grow up. To learn more about DDF, please visit us at

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