Interview with CureWear’s Founder, Alex Niles
Alex Niles transformed his cancer diagnosis into a business benefitting cancer patients in merely a year. As a healthy, 30-year-old living in New York City, Alex’s diagnosis hit unexpectedly. In response, friends created a GiveForward Page, Smiles for Niles, to gather emotional and financial support for him.
While undergoing treatments, Alex discovered a need among cancer patients for comfortable, functional clothing. Personal experience drove him to launch a Kickstarter, CureWear – Apparel with a Purpose. Through this campaign, Alex evolved his idea into a product to empower others fighting cancer.
We caught up with Alex to learn more about his experiences and accomplishments in the past year:
What role did GiveForward play in your cancer journey?
When I was diagnosed with Stage IV cancer, at age 30, on September 11th, 2013, I had no idea what to do. I was a young, healthy person with no family history and felt like a my life was pulled from underneath me. I had no idea what to do, what not do to, what steps I had to take – life felt like it was spinning out of control.
GiveForward not only efficiently let those in my life know about my health situation, it connected me with necessary support, and filled my life with love. Still to this day I read through some of the responses friends, family, and even strangers wrote to me with, and that continues to motivate me as I continue with treatment to date. I continue to ride the roller coaster I’m on, and take things one day at a time. This experience has opened my eyes to so many different things, and to a certain extent given me clarity and purpose – for that I am grateful.
What sticks out about your experiences using both GiveForward and Kickstarter?
Crowdfunding, in particular through experiences with GiveForward and Kickstarter, have been amazing ways to connect the greater community with purpose and meaning. For me personally, it showed me how many people wanted to support me during a challenging time, and for that I am forever grateful.
For Kickstarter, I was able to take a concept that I had witnessed as a need in my life, and validate that concept through people backing the idea and business. Not only was this a very well deserved and needed distraction for me personally, it allowed the groundwork for CureWear to build, and then leverage that momentum to move things forward.
How does your company, CureWear, support cancer patients and their loved ones?
CureWear is functional and fashionable clothing with a greater purpose. Designed to bring comfort to patients living with medical ports and PICC lines while inspiring public support, CureWear provides you with an opportunity to wear clothing that stands for a cause. Functionally, CureWear allows patients to keep their clothes on while getting treated (I always wear mine).
Additionally, there is a supporter line, that is a top notch athletic apparel line, where every purchase of two items results in one item given to a patient in need for free. Help patients feel comfortable and confident during cancer or chronic illness treatment and elevate the quality of life for individuals, families, and communities everywhere. We provide comfort. Your purchase provides support.
Are you or someone you know fighting cancer?
Support CureWear and Alex’s mission at MyCureWear.com.