John Stoddard Cancer Center, a service of UnityPoint Health-Des Moines, has launched the public phase ofIt Takes You,” a comprehensive fundraising campaign. The campaign will invest $18 million into the cancer center over the next three years, with a community fundraising goal of $6 million to support critical elements of treatment beyond medical expenses.

“For more than 30 years, the team at the John Stoddard Cancer Center has been committed to bringing the latest technology, advanced expert care and comprehensive individualized treatment plans to each patient,” said David Stark, president and CEO of UnityPoint Health-Des Moines. “We were the first cancer center in Central Iowa to house all radiation oncology and ancillary services in one location and we continue to lead the way with the highest quality cancer care.”

Of the total $18 million goal, the cancer center plans to use $9 million for capital and equipment upgrades, and $9 million will be invested in programs and services.

The capital investment began in early March with the purchase of a new Halcyon linear accelerator, which UnityPoint said is a first-of-its-kind addition in Iowa.

“The new Halcyon machine delivers radiation therapy to cancer patients four times faster than other machines,” said Dr. Robert Isaak, medical director of radiation oncology at Stoddard. “The shorter treatment time makes it easier for patients to remain still and will help reduce their pain, discomfort and anxiety.”

An additional $9 million will be invested into support programs and services to provide care, comfort and connection for patients when they need it most. Dollars raised throughout the campaign will support services such as mental health and well-being programs, cancer education, community outreach and financial assistance for patients to alleviate the unexpected costs of cancer. Most of these programs and services are only possible because of donor support and some are funded 100% through philanthropy.

“Donors are critical members of our care team here at Stoddard. Every donation, of any size, helps patients heal,” said Sarah Zeidler, executive director of the John Stoddard Cancer Center. “Whether it’s providing a comforting meal at the end of a long day or investing in life-saving technology, each donation makes an impact on our patients. We can’t do what we do without our community’s support.”

For more information, visit