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March 6, 1998     Cape Gazette
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March 6, 1998

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38 - CAPE GAZE'rYE, Friday, March 6 - March 12, 1998 " Cancer Watch Cancer in Common offers spiritual component "When I found out I had metastatic breast cancer, I just couldn't believe it. I talked to a social worker, and she said get medication, get a cat and get into a support group. I did it all. Somewhere I heard that people who are in support groups live longer. That encouraged me to join." - Carol Short, Metastatic breast cancer patient By Kerry Kester Cancer in Common is a support group that differs from most. It doesn't have a medical facilitator, and it has a strong spiritual com- ponent. Its goal is simply to pro- vide members with a place-where they can share their feelings in a spiritual context. The group started in May, when several Epworth United Methodist Church members determined a need for a nondenominational, spiritually based group. "It just seemed that in our church, and I'm sure in others, every time prayer concerns were mentioned, there was always somebody going for cancer tests, going for treatments or someone who had a friend or relative who was facing cancer," said Kaye Webb, a breast cancer survivor. The group is open to anyone. Webb said that sometimes spous- es who have lost their mates at- tend the meetings in an effort to help others. "They still come on occasion," said Webb, "and one reason they come again is that maybe there's some other person out there who has a family member who they Bosom Buddies to meet March 17 at Beebe Beebe Medical Center will sponsor Bosom Buddies, for women living with breast cancer, whether newly diagnosed, cur- rently undergoing treatment or long-time survivors, at 3 p.m., Tuesday, March 17. Call 645- 3770 for more information. SCAC to offer 'AIDS 101' class The Sussex County AIDS Com- mittee (SCAC) will offer a one- evening course, "AIDS 101," on Monday, March 9, at 7 p.m. The two-hour class will be held at the SCAC office, located at 107A South St. in Rehoboth Beach. The class is free and open to the gener- al public. One of the most powerful tools in the fight against AIDS is educa- tion, and SCAC has committed it- self to helping in that fight. Six times a year, the organization of- fers an "AIDS 101" course. The can help." Cancer in Common meets at Epworth on the third Tuesday of each month at 7 p.m. The group often has a guest speaker or discussion topic to be- gin each meeting. Once, for ex- ample, Gertie Hillman, founder and owner of Gertie's Greengro- cer, gave a presentation on the im- portance of good diet and vita- mins that can help cancer patients feel more comfortable. Joy Bartell, Tunnell Cancer Center oncology manager, also fa- cilitated a discussion on the im- portance of a spiritual base when coping with cancer. Webb said Bartell discussed how patients who have strong spiritual bases often fare better with their dis- eases, at least emotionally, than those who do not. Other facilitators have been from the clergy and have included topics such as healing, sharing, caring, thanksgiving, humor and life. "We wanted this to be a little different than a medical group," said Webb. "We wanted to irfi- prove ourselves spiritually. This is really different. It's sharing feelings; it's set in a Christian set- ting. "Each meeting, we prepare a prayer and concern list," said Webb. "Then each month, we send cards to encourage people.'" Often, those who receive the cards are friends or relatives who do not reside in the Cape Region com- munity," she said. "We also hope to promote awareness in the community,'" said Webb. Currently, some members are working on develop- ing a presentation aimed at pro- class gives basic information about HIV/AIDS, its transmis- sion, and its prevention. There is also time available during the class for participants to ask their own questions about whatever is- sues they have. The class is taught by Hank Barczak, immediate past president of the SCAC board of directors and a certified HIV/AIDS educator. Preregistration for the class is suggested. Participants who com- plete the class will be given a cer- tificate of achievement. To register, call 644-1090. Women: you can prevent hip fractures The American College of Sports Medicine published information from a study that shows that women who continue higher lev- els of physical activities as they age have a lower prevalence of hip fractures. Submitted by the YMCA of Rehoboth Beach For more information, call 227-8018 moting early detection and maintaining a positive atti- tude after diag- nosis. She said keeping the community aware of the need for early WEBB detection is very important. Of- ten, she said, people will have sus- picions, but because they are wor- ried about a positive diagnosis, they avoid getting "checkups until it is too late for effective treat- ment. "Our main thing is support and caring for others who aren't in our midst, but then the next thing is community awareness," said Webb. "For example, [cancer pa- tients'] lives can go on when they're undergoing treatments," said Webb, "It's not the end of the world." The group started at Epworth United Methodist Church in May and is open to anyone from any religion. Members not only in- elude those who have cancer or who have successfully been treat- ed for the disease, but it also wel- comes family members, friends or those who have lost loved ones to cancer. Cancer in Common also offers individual support. "Some people don't feel comfortable with a group situation, so if they contact us, one of us in the group will cer- tainly contact them," said Webb. Support includes someone to listen or provide direction toward various resources. "One woman in the group, for example, is very well versed in filling out insur- ance papers," said Webb. "We all have something that we're inter- egted in. We really want to reach out to people and touch some- one's life in a positive way." Webb continued her normal daily activities as well as she could while she underwent thera- py for her cancer. Many of those who knew her were awed by her courage and strength. "A lot of people feel like I did - the 'I can do this by myself' attitude," she said. "I can handle this, but when it gets down to it, it's been the en- couragement of others who have been in that situation who have helped me the most." The topic for the Tuesday, March 17 meeting is "The Power of Prayer." For more information about Cancer in Common, call the church office at 227-7743 or Webb, at 645-9711. In 1922, the Visiting Nurse Association was born in Delaware. Since then, we've expanded our service area, meeting the needs of the people of Delaware and bordering communities in three other states. And now, as we move forward into the future with our partners in healthcare, we are proud to announce that we have become Christiana Care Visiting Nurse Association. Our new name reflects a closer working relationship with other parts of the Christiana Care Health System, as well as our vision to develop relationships throughout the Region which will help us provide the best home healthcare services available. Many things you know about us will not change - our offices throughout the Region, staffed with local nurses and healthcare professionals, our commitment to every person, in every town, in every county in the region. Many things have changed since 1922. But one thing remains the same... There's nothing like the healing power of home. Milford Georgetown C rmlSrlANA CARE 422-2010 VISITING NURSE ASSOCIATION 855-9700 1-800-VNA-0001