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PAUSE: /poz/


1. a temporary stop in action or speech. 2. interrupt action or speech briefly 3. a reason or cause for pausing (as to contemplate, reflect or reconsider how special life is, or how important you are in our lives).

Her last idea, her last vision;
to create, inspire and make a difference.

Just before COVID, Gwen DeBryun was diagnosed with breast cancer. She spent the next two years of the pandemic fighting the cancer that was attacking her body. As she fought for her life she thought of all the other people around the World that were now also facing endless tragedies over and over during the COVID pandemic; some of the tragedies were more personal than others. 

During this time, like so many others, she found more time for reflection. Gwen was able to think and process how she feel about her life, those she loved; and she also thought about all that we, collectively, have lost and all that we have gained.

Initially, the Pause: /poz/ project was to highlight the personal stories of self reflection, growth and most importantly the hope, the hope that we all personally found during the pandemic as we faced enduring loss and struggles over and over and publish the stories online and in a hardbound covered book.  However, just before Gwen was able to make Pause a reality, Fate played another card for her to counter. Gwen, was told by her Doctors that they found Multiple Myeloma cells attacking her liver and that there are no cures for this cancer, and meds and chemo would only hold this demon at bay for so long.

While being treated at the Mayo Clinic in Arizona, Gwen facing all new hurtles, listened to the stories of others who were going through Multiple Myeloma. She heard stories that were absolutely heartbreaking and inspiring all at the same time. She heard stories of loss and salvation - and all the time she watched the toll it took on all those involved, from the patient, their loved ones and the staff, who always tried to find the sunshine. It was at this time that the original idea for Pause changed and adapted.


After that stay, when she returned home, Gwen decided she wanted to start a NPO, Charity or Foundation that would help ease the burden of such weight cancer causes emotionally and financially - even if it only was able to help that person, or family, for a brief moment in time, for brief moments in time can completely change our lives and our opinions about life forever.

It also should be told that Gwen loved South Haven. She spent most of her career helping build SoHa to what it is today. She was a Founding member of the Visitors Bureau, and a Board Member to many organizations. She believed in the South Haven Community with all her heart and actively promoted business in downtown on almost a daily basis. She championed many programs throughout the years and embraced all the fun and craziness along the way.

So Gwen decided that the best way she could raise funds for this idea was to create a program that mirrored “Women Only Weekend.” She wanted to create a weekend that promoted embracing personal growth, spirituality and the love of life, family and friends, and still collect stories of hope, reflection, love and loss - as well as, promoting the small businesses in and around South Haven.


Her idea, her vision

To Create a Non-Profit Foundation or Organization that would: 

  • Provide grants and assistance to those effected by Multiple Myeloma and/or Alzheimer's that are in need of respite.​

    • These grants would be for those that need respite care workers to come in and assist the family or individual, or for those that just need a break from the battle itself and need a vacation to recharge their batteries and fight the good fight once again.​

      • Simply put - these grants would provide funds for care workers, or vacations. 

  • Provide grants and assistance to care facilities for capital improvement projects that focus on personal growth, spirituality, and improving quality of life for those effected by Multiple Myeloma and Alzheimer's.

  • Provide grants and/or funding for Researching Institutions, Organizations and Facilities that are trying to find the cure for Multiple Myeloma and Alzheimer's. 

  • Percentage of fundraising would pay for instructors, classes and activities during the PAUSE Weekend.

Gwen's ideas to Raise Funds for PAUSE: 

Gwen believed that Pause could raise money through the typical donations, charity drives and charity auctions that most NPO's use to raise funding for their organization, but Gwen, as a Business Woman, saw the value of "Women's only Weekend," and the increase of tourism it brought. Gwen looked to capitalize off that model and create a weekend event in the Spring, that would solicit funding for PAUSE as well as raise awareness of Multiple Myeloma and Alzheimer's and of course be a weekend to revitalize ones soul and provide hope. 


  • The Pause event would focus on creating events in South Haven with other local businesses that would promote personal growth, respite, healthy eating, exercise, and most importantly compassion, love and between friends, family and strangers.

  • Local Businesses would voluntarily donate a certain percentage of weekend sales to the Pause Organization. 

  • Owners of Local STR's would voluntarily donate a percentage of weekend rental profits to the Pause Organization. 

  • Participants would be encouraged to solicit and donate funds to the PAUSE Organization.

    • Create a Beach Walk, where participants look for beach glass and walk "x" amount of miles on the shoreline, like a cancer walk - participants would solicit donations ​for every "x" amount of miles they walk and for the amount stain glass they find. 

"The experienced mount climber is not intimidated by a mountain - [s]he is inspired by it. The persistent winner is not discouraged by a problem - [s]he is challenged by it. Mountains are created to be conquered; adversities are designed to be defeated; problems are sent to be solved. It is better to master one mountain than a thousand foothills." 

~William Arthur Ward

When I first read the quote by William A. Ward all I could do was think about my Mother - about her life and how she faced the world without ever showing her daughters any fear as she conquered the mountains that were put ahead of her...and now, for the first time in our lives together, we have found ourselves openly fearful of what tomorrow will bring and yet, hopeful and encouraged at the same time.
                                                    - Amber Fae

PAUSE: /pôz/ 

Ideas for the


Beach Glass Walk



Healthy Cooking

Sunsets with Loved Ones

Dance Classes

Retail Therapy

Original Ideas for Published Work by PAUSE:



Reflections, are the shared Mother and Daughter stories, memories, insights about their journey together from Gwen DeBruyn and her daughter, Amber Burger. as they face life's unexpected journey(s) together and all the hope that they have found along the way. 


Inspiration, is the cumulative stories, poems, prose, pictures and paintings that all of you submit about your self-reflection, growth, fears, dreams and all the hope you have experienced dealing with tragedy during COVID, Cancer or Alzheimer's. 



Published Work and other merchandise that will hopefully provide hope to others going through Alzheimer's, Breast Cancer, COVID, and Multiple Myeloma, as well as, make some sort of change by provide funding for research and care facilities.  

To help us remember her smile and her love for life, family and friends.

For more information on how you can get involved, donate, or become a Board Member, please...

    Contact Us    

408 Eagle Street

South Haven, MI 49090

Tel: 269.637.8770

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