To show you what we are striving to do in New Hampshire:
My name is Kim. I’m 49 years old, a mother, wife, friend, and 6-year cancer survivor. I’m writing to share how Gilda’s Club Madison helped me pursue my cancer path on my terms with laughter and fun.
My family and I aren’t the sort to wallow when dealing with tough stuff. For instance, when I was going through my breast cancer treatment and reconstruction surgery, my friends and family threw me a Bye-Bye Boobies Party, which included a cake. The night ended with my 89-year-old grandfather saying, “Good luck with your remodeling!” Gilda’s Club met me where I was, laughter and all.
One of the best things my family learned at Gilda’s was that there are real health benefits from laughing. Laughter Club is open to the public and I think everyone should try it. I became a member because I had so many questions about cancer and treatment. I wanted support from others that had already gone through it. I’m still a member because I want to share the experiences I went through and pay it forward to new members. A lot of people don’t realize that ongoing support is important! Gilda’s offered support not only for me, but my whole family.
On Tuesday evenings my then 3-year-old and I would go to the family support night. We’d eat a great volunteer-made dinner, and then go to our own support groups. My group was for men and women dealing with any kind of cancer. My son would learn about cancer with other kids. Attending those groups helped us have some really important conversations. Gilda’s isn’t just about support groups. I learned how to knit and crochet, which helped me pass the time after surgery and in waiting rooms. I also learned how to cook healthier, which my family really likes. My favorite skill, which I still use, is relaxation and guided imagery. I use it daily!
Why do I choose to tell my story? Not because I’m a great writer or because I like speaking in front of people. Sharing my story has been therapeutic for me and it’s my hope others will learn from my experiences. Most of all, I want to make sure people know they don’t have to go through cancer alone! Gilda’s is my safe place, my home away from home – and it can be yours, too, if you need them.
This online radio show from the Cancer Support Community focuses on the emotions and feelings that cancer patients and caregivers might experience as they cope with the impact of the spread of coronavirus. Many cancer patients and caregivers are reporting feeling alone, anxious, and fearful of the future. On the show guests help put context to their feelings and share strategies to help them cope. Host, Kim Thiboldeaux, CEO, Cancer Support Community is joined by Jamie Aten, a disaster expert who was faced with his own personal disaster when he was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer at the age of 35 and Susan Ash-Lee, Vice President of Clinical Services for the Cancer Support Community. Listen to the show
A Kentucky Derby Fundraiser is coming to the Belknap Mill on Sept. 26, 2020 (if not postponed due to COVID-19)
The event is being put on by Suzanne Caroselli of Eleganza Wig and Hat Boutique & Friends to raise money for Gilda’s Club New Hampshire and will be held at the Belknap Mill 25 Beacon Street East, Laconia, NH
There will be hors d’oevres prepared by Local Eatery, fun music and you can even take a chance on the local celebrity Kentucky Derby “jockeys” as well as the Kentucky Derby itself, which will be followed by prizes donated by local businesses.
If you and/or your business would like to sponsor this event, make a donation to the prize table, or buy a ticket email Sue or call (603)387-6665
SPONSOR EVENT $1,000 Name on banner and radio time Name in Program Logo on t-shirt worn by celebrity jockeys Table of 8 for the event $400 Level Name on banner Name in Program Logo on t-shirt worn by celebrity jockeys $200 Level Name in program Logo on t-shirt worn by celebrity jockeys $100 Level Name a horse for celebrity race (only 10 available) (Winning sponsor receives $50 gift card) $50 Table centerpiece Advertise your business
The CEO of the Cancer Support Community, Kim Thiboldeaux, also hosts a radio show every Tuesday at 4pm on cancer-related topics. You can tune in every week as well as access replays of past topics. Recently, Kim hosted a show entitled Spotlight on Coronavirus: Your Questions Answered that’s very timely and informative.
With the Nation sheltering in place, people who are impacted by cancer may feel very alone. We can’t gather together and connect. However, the Cancer Support Community can help, even if we can’t have group meetings right now.
Today’s reality is daunting–especially for those who are currently or have faced cancer. Social distancing makes it hard to connect with people, and with the added stress of a weakened immune system…it’s hard to find a place where you can get support, hear a friendly voice, or just be with others.Here are some options that can help you connect with others.
Online Support: My Life Line
One option is My Life Line which is set up so you can find cancer support online through the Cancer Support Community.Your private friends and family sites feature:
My Updates – Interactive blog to document your journey, update family and friends, and where your guests can send personalized messages of love, wisdom, and support.
Helping Calendar – The place where friends and family can find out about your treatment schedule and how to help you.
Inspirational Photo Gallery – The place where your personal photos will inspire you and others.The discussion boards feature:- The exchange of information, opinions, and stories with others impacted by cancer- Moderated by a licensed professional. These resources are available 24 hours/day, 7 days/week
Phone Support: Cancer Support Helpline
Another choice is the Cancer Support Helpline. The Cancer Support Community’s TOLL-FREE Cancer Support Helpline is for anyone affected by cancer. Call 1-888-793-9355 Mon. – Fri. 9:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m. ET Sat. – Sun. 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. ET
The Cancer Support Helpline is staffed by counselors and resource specialists who have over 170 years of combined experience helping people affected by cancer. They are available to provide emotional support as well as information and referral to local, regional and national resources to anyone impacted by a cancer diagnosis. All of their services are provided to you in English and Spanish.
We hope this helps you find the help you need through trying times! Pat
Over thirty years ago I was diagnosed with breast cancer. I was fortunate that I discovered it at an early stage, but it was still a very difficult experience. When I was 16, I watched my father die from cancer. I still remember the sound of the floorboards creaking at night because he was in too much pain to sleep. I was terrified that I would be in the same situation.
I kept thinking that there must be a way to help people through this experience, but there were no suitable support groups where I was living at the time. Years later when I was living in Madison, Wisconsin a friend who had recently gone through cancer told me about visiting a Gilda’s Club in another city. When she told me what it was like, I knew that was the answer! We formed the founding group and started Gilda’s Club Madison. (That’s their clubhouse in the picture.)
When I moved to Laconia, New Hampshire, I was dismayed to find not only a lack of a Club here in the Lakes Region, but in the whole of New England. I wanted to start another Gilda’s Club here, but I was concerned that the community is too small to fund it.
When Gilda’s Club Madison had their 10th year anniversary, I went back for the celebration. All day people I didn’t even know kept thanking me for starting that club because it did so much for them and their families. The Club brings smiles to the faces of people who are touched by cancer. It brings a place of comfort, support, education and relaxation outside of a hospital or clinical environment. It’s a haven for those whose lives have been impacted by cancer.
On the plane ride home I couldn’t stop thinking that we have to find a way to make it happen in New Hampshire. I’m so lucky to have found other people who agree and are working with me to make this dream a reality.
Won’t you join us? Tell us why you would like to have a Gilda’s Club in Central New Hampshire! Pat