Tampa school counselor known for giving back gets help in cancer fight

Posted at 5:59 PM, Dec 12, 2016

A Tampa middle school counselor isn't letting cancer keep her down. Despite her diagnosis, she continues to go above and beyond to help kids in need. Now, the community is returning the favor.

You don't have to look very hard to see the work of Angela Roberts at Tampa's Farnell Middle School.

"It's been my mission in life. God has put me on this Earth to help others," said Roberts.

Angela routinely goes above and beyond her job of counseling students. She has a stockpile of school supplies in her office and runs a clothing and food pantry, all to help families in need. Right now, she's doing a Christmas gift drive. And that's all being done, while she's fighting non-Hodgkins lymphoma.

"1,250 students are watching me every day to see how I handle this situation. There are times I feel down or sick, but I put one foot in front of the other, because these students depend on me," said Roberts.

"I think it's a great example for everyone here. We can look and say, 'I want to be like Ms. Roberts when I grow up,'" said Farnell student Jacob Thomas.

Because of how much she's helped others, the community is now stepping up for her.

"She's always giving and doesn't understand the effect she has," said Angela's friend Jennifer Lingo.

Angela is a single mom and has no family in the area. So friends are making sure Angela's every need is met--from rides to chemo, to meals, and keeping donations coming to support kids at Farnell. Tuesday night, Dec. 13, they're hosting a benefit dinner.

"We want to be able to do something for her and show her how much she means to us," said Lingo.

It's all making the counselor even more determined to not let cancer get in her way.

If you'd like to help, the benefit dinner for Angela Roberts is Tuesday night from 4-10 p.m. at Nabruzzi's Italian Restaurant in Westchase, 11652 Countryway Blvd.

You're also welcome to drop off donations for the Farnell Middle School food pantry and clothing closet anytime when school is in session.