April is National Volunteer Month, and one of our most exciting new programs wouldn’t be possible without the help of volunteers: CancerCare’s Pen Pal Program! The Pen Pal Program is offered in partnership with Caring About Seniors and connects older adults with volunteer letter-writers to reduce feelings of isolation through the pandemic and beyond.
Learn about the importance of providing newly diagnosed lung cancer patients and their loved ones with simple, clear patient-sensitive language about their diagnosis and treatment options.
Our social workers are what set CancerCare apart from other support organizations, and each year during National Social Work Month, we highlight the people behind our clinical programs and services.
Every ethnic and racial group in the country is affected by cancer. While some may say cancer does not discriminate, certain demographic groups bear a disproportionate burden as it relates to incidence, prevalence, mortality, survivorship, outcomes, and other cancer-related measures. These disparities are often due to social, environmental, and economic disadvantages. For those who identify as Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC), there are clear health disparities.
CancerCare for Kids' offers year-round, free support services for children impacted by cancer: those living with cancer, have a loved one with cancer or have experienced the loss of a loved one to cancer. In 2020, CancerCare for Kids offered a variety of holiday programs including the Winter Warmth Program, the Winter Wonderland Gift Program and the Holiday Gift Card Program.
As the year comes to a close, we reflect on all that 2020 has brought us. CancerCare stayed true to its mission to provide help and hope to anyone affected by cancer, finding new ways and new opportunities to serve our community despite the pandemic. We are proud to share these highlights from the past twelve months:
For people affected by cancer, the holiday season can be a complicated time of year. Oncology social worker Leeann Medina-Martinez, LMSW, offers her insight on staying connected and creating new traditions during a year unlike any other.
Being a caregiver can be a full time job, and caregivers often put their own needs or feelings aside while providing physical and emotional care for their loved one. In times of stress, it can be helpful to remember that taking care of yourself is an important part of being a caregiver. In recognition of National Family Caregiver Awareness Month, Alyson Erardy, an oncology social worker and moderator of our young adult caregiver online support group, explores the Caregiver’s Bill of Rights and how it can help caregivers while supporting a loved one in need.
Carolyn Messner, DSW, OSW-C, FAPOS, FAOSW, LCSW-R, CancerCare’s Director of Education and Training, remembers the first CancerCare Connect Education Workshop as if it was yesterday. “It was a snowy day in March thirty years ago, and we held a telephone workshop on doctor-patient communication called, ‘Doctor, Can We Talk?’ About 30 people signed up, and it was an amazing experience,” she recalls. “I could feel it was the start of something special.”
Last month, CancerCare debuted a brand-new digital fundraising campaign called Do Something for CancerCare. In place of our traditional walk/run events, our Events team designed a do-it-yourself campaign that made it possible for anyone to join in and support us—including friends of CancerCarelocated across the country!