Although many cancer survivors have a strong network of family and friends eager to provide support, they may not fully understand what it is like to cope with a cancer diagnosis. That’s why Cancer Services offers support groups each month for cancer patients and survivors to share their stories with one another. Some are specific to the type of cancer, others are offered in outlying parishes, some are even for patients’ families and friends, helping them learn about the disease and connect with others who have loved ones living with cancer..
When one joins a cancer support group, one can:
- Share questions, concerns and feelings
- Connect with others who understand
- Enhance your knowledge and understanding of your type of cancer
- Reduce your level of stress and anxiety
- Increase your coping skills
- Develop a sense of well-being
Counseling is an effective tool used by many individuals from all walks of life seeking to improve their emotional and physical health. Any cancer diagnosis is stressful, and counseling is an effective means for learning how to cope with a newly stressful situation. With the help of a trained counselor, one can learn how to best manage the numerous issues that emerge during and after cancer treatment, issues faced by the cancer survivor and concerned family members. Clients and family members are each allowed six free sessions of counseling. We provide counselling in house with our licensed social workers or can make referrals to partner agencies. Call 225-927-2273 for more information.
Reiki is a Japanese technique for stress reduction and relaxation that also promotes healing. It is administered by laying hands on patients and is based on the idea that an unseen “life force energy” flows through us and causes us to be alive. If one’s energy is low, then we are more likely to get sick or feel stress, and if it is high, we are more capable of being happy and healthy. A session feels like wonderful glowing radiance that flows through and around you. Reiki treats the whole person—including body, emotions, mind, and spirit—creating many beneficial effects that include relaxation and feelings of peace, security and well-being. Reiki is a simple, natural and safe method of spiritual healing. It also works in conjunction with all other medical or therapeutic techniques to relieve side effects and promote recovery.
By appointment only. Call 225-927-2273.
The Peer-to-Peer Support Program gives clients and caregivers coping with a new cancer diagnosis an opportunity to speak with a patient or caregiver who has “been through it,” and thus obtain valuable information regarding a specific illness and treatment experiences. In addition, this program will allow new clients an opportunity to receive emotional support, learn new coping strategies and become knowledgeable about available community resources. Clients and peer volunteers can be matched by age, diagnosis, and gender or any other client preference.
Typically, these relationships are for a short time, although long-lasting friendships are often formed. Volunteers should have an interest and commitment to helping others and be willing to speak openly with new clients regarding their experiences. Most contact is by phone, although meetings between the participants are sometimes possible.
Conversations typically cover:
- new research
- self-care issues
- coping skills
Periodic peer-to-peer volunteer trainings will be held to help volunteers feel more comfortable working with new clients, but cancer survivors are already the experts in surviving cancer!
For more information, call 225-927-2273.