Amy Schneider – Oncology Nursing Month Highlight

Oncology nurses are there to explain the diagnosis to patients and their families and be their guide through treatment. They are there to celebrate the wins and provide comfort when the road gets rough. Their commitment, dedication, and endless compassion for their patients deserve to be recognized. To end Oncology Nursing Month, we wanted to recognize one of our own. Today, we’re celebrating you, Amy Schneider.

Amy Schneider SOMBFAB

Meet Amy Schneider

Amy Schneider, B.S.N., R.N., CHPON, is a Case Manager for Cancer Survivorship, founder and facilitator of AYA Support Group Some Of My Best Friends Are Bald, and a member of b-present’s Advisory Board. She has been at the Peckham Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders at Rady Children’s Hospital in San Diego for 33 years.

“When I started working in the clinic, it was apparent that there was very little in place specifically for our adolescent population. And here we are 30 years later still and always working on this. I have always loved working with that age group and our child life specialist at the time, and I started SOMBFAB. We will be 30 years old in April!”

What is SOMBFAB?

SOMBFAB, or Some Of My Best Friends Are Bald, is a support group for teens and young adult cancer patients and their siblings that focuses on life-lasting friendships and creating memories to last that lifetime and beyond. They provide a ton of age-appropriate activities and experiences that give AYA and their siblings a wonderful place to connect. With the recent pandemic, SOMBFAB is facing the same challenges that everyone has—not being able to connect in person. For the duration, they started ZOOMBFAB, where everyone is virtually connecting via Zoom twice a month to keep the thread of connection going during this difficult time.

sombfab BLUE logo

Her “Day Job”

Amy is in charge of coordinating care for almost 700 cancer survivors who are active with Rady Children’s Hospital, and her database has nearly 1300 people on it (this includes survivors that have moved on to adult care or moved away, etc.).

“It has always been my goal to make each patient feel just as important as they did on day one, no matter how far out treatment they are! Their Thriving After Cancer Clinic is a multidisciplinary clinic that helps our survivors move forward and Live Their Best Life. It is always an incredible blessing to do the work you feel you were born to do. I feel as though SOMBFAB is my life’s work. We have enhanced the lives of countless AYA.”

Learn more

Oncology Nurses Month – Why ‘Thank You’ Will Never Feel Like Enough

Throughout their careers, oncology nurses will impact thousands of families and lives. They are advocates, friends, extended family, and confidants during a unique and challenging time of life. They defined our cancer experience in unimaginable yet incredible ways. 

Our Experience

I can’t imagine Kirsten’s experience without her nurses by her side. They served a vital role in providing normalcy, support, and companionship when she desperately needed it. They listened without judgment, allowed her to speak her mind, and gave her the space to be her authentic self in her new home. Those simple conversations about normal things mattered, restored hope, and kept her sane and upbeat in a place that could otherwise be very lonely and sad. 

And the nurses knew when to go the extra mile or facilitate connections that put the wind back in her sails. They made time during their busy shifts to walk the halls with her, take a break in the garden with her, or just hang out in her room and joke for a few minutes. They made defining moments like her 20th birthday, and the end of treatment feel special with beautiful colorful posters and singing. 

When her world started to fall apart unexpectedly, they were the trusted friends that spoke to her with compassion and honesty, allowing her to calmly come to terms with her fate. And when we knew there was no turning back, they came to her side to say one last goodbye.

Those countless moments of compassion and support from her nurses brought Kirsten hope, joy, laughter, and in the end, peace. 


The hardest thing we had to do after saying goodbye to Kirsten was saying goodbye to our extended family of oncology nurses. When her experience was over, so was our connection to the only world we knew for those seven months. We understood why it had to end, but it felt like we lost more than a child that day. 

New Beginnings

Since starting the b-present Foundation, I have had the pleasure of reconnecting with this fantastic community, and I continue to learn about and be inspired by how they fight for young adults behind the scenes. It gives me great hope for the future. They navigate the delicate balance between the rules and the humanity they know is needed. They meet and brainstorm how to make things better, sharing ideas and support, knowing they are all fighting for the same cause. 

b-present Foundation young adult cancer support Workshop 2019 | Oncology Nurses Month

Improving the Quality and Impact of the Young Adult Support Network Workshop hosted by the b-present Foundation on November 14 & 15, 2019


After treatment is over, they work tirelessly to provide continued support, stay connected, create meaningful experiences, and new memories for the survivors ready to move forward and conquer the world with their own amazing gifts. Especially during times like these, I can only imagine the challenges oncology nurses face daily. It must be exhausting. Yet they stay the course with courage and compassion, facing the unimaginable time and again, giving each young adult the hope, normalcy, and escape they need. 

‘Thank You’ Oncology Nurses

‘Thank you’ never seems like enough, and today is no exception. To the oncology nurses around the world, we appreciate you, we are grateful for your endless sacrifices, and we can’t imagine what the journey would be like without you by our side.