On February 19, Smith Center will host “Navigating Cancer: Charting your Journey,” the first session in what will become a series of programs to help patients navigate through the cancer experience. Led by Carole O’Toole, Smith Center’s Director of Integrative Navigation Programs, the series will distill insights she has gleaned as a cancer survivor and a Cancer Coach for hundreds of survivors. The first program will offer resources for newly diagnosed patients, individuals in the early stages of treatment, and their caregivers – empowering them with skills to make wiser choices and find opportunities to heal through the cancer experience.
"Getting a cancer diagnosis can change your entire world—work, relationships, core beliefs, self-image, and day-to day experience,” explains O’Toole, who launched Smith Center’s holistic navigation program in 2006. “As a navigator, I help people make important choices about their care and how they choose to experience illness.” The program will combine expert advice and group discussion to allow people to share their own experiences and get direct, expert feedback.
Carole is a national leader in Integrative Cancer Care, and also spends time with patients to make sure they are aware of therapies that could support treatment, reduce stress, or ease side effects and symptoms. These supportive therapies, including nutrition, yoga, acupuncture, reiki and others, are proven approaches that many physicians may not be as familiar with.
The series is based on Smith Center’s groundbreaking Integrative Patient Navigation model, which takes into consideration an individual’s whole cancer experience – the cultural, social, emotional, and the physical – and promotes healing on all levels. “Opportunities for healing present very differently for each person, but feeding the spirit is essential in living well with cancer. Accessing these opportunities can be enhanced through journaling, seeking moments of solitude, and finding joy along the way,” says O’Toole.
“Charting Your Journey” will be held on Tuesday, February 19 at 6:30pm, and will include experiential stress reduction techniques and time for Q&A. Cost is $10 per person and caregivers are welcome.
Participants may attend any sessions that are of interest to them. Details on additional sessions will be announced as they are available.