Terri Clifton dedicated herself to being an Oncology Social Worker for the past 18 years. She began her social work journey as a hospital social worker after graduating from the University of Delaware in 1980. Terri spent a portion caring for her aunt who battled bladder cancer while Terri was growing up. Taking her aunt to appointments and spending time with her during treatment was Terri’s first real experience in a hospital setting. This is what led her to realize she was destined to find a career in helping people.
Terri was a case manager in the hospital for the first 18 years of her career. Shortly after beginning her career as a case manager, her mother was diagnosed with Stage IV cancer and received treatment at a hospital nearby. After seeing her mother endure treatment and all of the harsh realities that come with a cancer diagnosis, Terri was motivated to devote herself to a career in oncology social work. “Cancer affects the whole family. I saw what my family went through with my mom in treatment, and it showed me I can do better than what my mom received in terms of being provided resources and extra support.” In 2005, she made the transition to being an oncology social worker at TidalHealth Nanticoke Hospital.
Terri always knew she wanted a career where she felt she was truly making a difference in peoples’ lives. She says the most rewarding part of her job was “seeing the relief and gratitude on peoples’ faces after helping them”. This is what drove her passion to continue working in oncology. Terri’s philosophy as a social worker was to ensure people felt heard and understood and to make sure they knew they would never fight their cancer battle alone. She understood that being an advocate for these patients made the biggest impact on their lives.
When asked about her experience with Bringing Hope Home, Terri says, “I tell everybody that Bringing Hope Home is the best organization I have experience with, and it was truly a pleasure working with you guys. I saw first-hand the impact BHH made on peoples’ lives and the patients are all so grateful for your assistance. The name of your organization is amazing, as your work truly is just HOPE”.
In her free time, Terri enjoys photography, reading, driving on her John Deere Gator around her farm, and feeding the fish in her pond. Since her retirement, Terri has been spending lots of time with her son, daughter-in-law, and her grandbaby, Will. She also recently joined a women’s bible study group and has been peacefully relaxing on her small farm.
Thank you, Terri, for making an impact and for providing Unexpected Amazingness to those in need!