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Fidelis Care, Bed-Stuy Restoration Project help man with brain tumor get much-needed help

Posted at 5:30 PM, Jul 08, 2016
and last updated 2016-07-08 17:30:51-04

Ashok Kumar found out something pretty scare after a visit to the doctor.

"After a blood test, he found a tumor in my brain," he remembered.

He had a five-hour surgery almost immediately after the diagnosis.

"I had 40 stitches in my brain," he described.

But, the outcome could have been very different, because it wasn't until Kumar got insurance that he went in for a medical check-up.

"I got the insurance with Fidelis Care and I went to see the doctor," he said. "He sent me for a scan, an MRI and finally they found a big tumor."

He, along with his family, are now insured by Fidelis Care, which partners with the Bedford-Stuyvesant Restoration Project.

"It's really a one-stop shop for the community to improve themselves, improve the quality of life  and really enjoy life as we see it," Jacko Borren, director of program operations, explained.

It's the nation's first community-development corporation, founded by Robert Kennedy almost 50 years ago and now expanding under one roof.

"All those services combined with Fidelis combines a really comprehensive wraparound for someone to really achieve self sufficiency and upward mobility," he said.

Fidelis Care marketing director, Lori Vavrinec, says helping people in their own community, like Brooklyn, makes all the difference.

"We are about the community, we are in Bed-Stuy five days a week," she said. "Anyone that stops in can find someone who can speak in a language they understand, we really want to help the residents."

As for how Kumar is doing?

"I'm feeling good, I'm healthy," he smiled.