10 Questions: Kenmore Nonprofit Founder Lavar Jacobs
On May 1, 2021, Lavar Jacobs opened the Kim Jacobs Breast Cancer Resource Center at 946 Kenmore Boulevard to support women faced with a breast cancer diagnosis and in need of anything from counseling and financial advice to a massage or a wig fitting. Named in tribute to his mother who passed away from breast cancer in 2009, Lavar has worked tirelessly to honor her life, memory and courageous battle by providing support to women as they go through breast cancer treatment and beyond.
1. Why did you choose to start the Kim Jacobs Breast Cancer Resource Center?
My Mother passed away from Breast Cancer in 2009. That led me to start my nonprofit organization, Not Just October (NJO), in 2014. We were providing several resources for women currently battling, but wanted to establish a single location to provide as many of those resources as we could from. That location ultimately became the Kim Jacobs Breast Cancer Resource Center.
2. Did you face any challenges while working to establish Not Just October? How did you overcome them?
Spreading the word about the organization was an issue initially, but I buckled down and got deeper in the community through events and organizations. Networking is a major key in the growth of NJO.
3. What services do you provide to women battling breast cancer and their families?
We provide lawn care, snow removal, home cleaning, carpet cleaning, wigs, massages, tutoring for their children, therapy for the family members, food through our pantry, and much more. Anything a woman may need, if we can find an entrepreneur who provides the service and we have the finances to pull it off, it’s done!
4. Why did you choose to locate the center on Kenmore Boulevard?
Kenmore is a growing area and I also appreciated the support they gave us on social media. Everything lined up and it was perfect!
5. Did you have any connection to Kenmore prior to opening the Kim Jacobs Breast Cancer Resource Center?
No I didn’t. I work at Metro on Kenmore Blvd., but that was the extent of it.
6. How can people help support the Kim Jacobs Breast Cancer Resource Center?
People can donate in person at our location financially or through cash app $notjustoctober, Zelle firstname.lastname@example.org, or drop off non-perishable items to our pantry. We are active on all social media under @notjustoctober, FOLLOW US!
7. What advice do you have for anyone who may want to launch their own nonprofit in Kenmore?
GO FOR IT! I’m here to support, don’t get in your own way, focus and make it happen.
8. What is your favorite spot in Kenmore? What do you love about it?
Just a Dad From Akron because I like what they represent over there! Being a father is important and I’m happy about the recognition they give us.
9. How do you envision Kenmore Boulevard in 10 years?
I think Kenmore Boulevard will have an artistic Highland Square kind of vibe with food and exciting attractions.
10. Is there a favorite memory of your mother that you’d like to share?
I wish I could relax and watch General Hospital with my Mom, she loved Soap Operas. My mom always told me to believe in myself, she was also my biggest supporter. She’s the reason I feel like I can do anything!
Bonus question: What should people know about the Kim Jacobs Breast Cancer Walk Saturday?
People can expect a sea of pink taking over Kenmore Blvd! The street will be blocked off down to Shadyside Park! Vendors in the park will be welcoming and selling all different types of merchandise. Show up at 8am wearing pink or purchase some Not Just October merchandise, WALK WITH US!!!
The Kim Jacobs Breast Cancer Walk '21 takes place Saturday, October 16 from 10am - 3pm. The walk begins at the Kim Jacobs Breast Cancer Resource Center (946 Kenmore Blvd, Akron Ohio, 44314) and concludes at Shadyside Park. For more information, visit kimjacobswalk.org.