I am a person with cancer


Dealing with the feelings and changes cancer can bring can be difficult. Gilda’s Club Westchester knows how important finding a supportive community can be. Whether you are recently diagnosed, in treatment, or post treatment, finding the right emotional support is an essential complement to medical care. In addition to our support groups and educational components, we offer distress screenings, short-term counseling, and skills based trainings. Here, people living with cancer will be able to find the support that best fits their needs.

Distress Screening 

Emerging research suggests that screening for and addressing distress not only enhances quality of life but may also be associated with improved cancer outcomes. Distress screening at Gilda’s Club Westchester involves completing a brief 25-item self-report questionnaire at Gilda’s Club Westchester. Once completed a clinical staff member will meet with you and review the areas identified. This questionnaire will assist us in better meeting your psychosocial support needs.

Short-Term Counseling 

Gilda’s Club Westchester is now offering short-term individual counseling to those with a cancer diagnosis. Cancer impacts many aspects of one’s life. Short-term counseling provides up to six sessions with a licensed mental health professional, giving individuals with cancer the opportunity to discuss their current areas of concern in relation to their cancer diagnosis

Family Focus 

Many times individuals living with cancer and their loved ones have difficulty communicating their emotional concerns and fears. Family Focus brings together the entire family, as designated by the person living with cancer, for a discussion facilitated by one of our mental health professionals. The session is designed to bring families together to create an opportunity for them to communicate their feelings, which can include concerns about their loved one’s diagnosis and changes in family roles, and give them tools to learn to live together with cancer. During this session, the entire family will have an opportunity to address both the emotional and practical aspects of the impact of a cancer diagnosis. Family Focus can take place over one or two sessions.

Bilingual Breast Cancer Support Hotline 

Through the hotline, women with breast cancer will be able to receive a distress screening and up to six sessions of short-term phone counseling from a Gilda’s Club licensed mental health professional. Short term one-on-one counseling provides women with breast cancer the opportunity to discuss their current areas of difficulty in relation to their cancer diagnosis with the goal of decreasing emotional distress. Women with breast cancer can call 914-997-6006 to speak with a bilingual (English/Spanish) licensed mental health professional and access short term individual counseling and resources over the phone. Funding for this hotline was provided through a contract with the New York State Department of Health and the Breast Cancer Alliance. Click here for more information.

Skills-based Training 

Adapted from Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT), a formal treatment modality, this six-week skills-based workshop series teaches individuals how to manage and cope with the emotions and stress of living with cancer using mindfulness, emotion regulation and distress tolerance skills. These workshops will be offered in the fall and spring. Click here to view a flyer for the October 2014 workshops.

Survivorship Series 

The transition from active treatment to post treatment is a difficult journey for many cancer survivors. This four-part series is comprised of supportive and educational sessions for individuals who are post-treatment, with any cancer diagnosis and any course of treatment. 

This fall’s Cancer Survivorship Series will take place on Tuesdays, October 14th, 21st, 28th and November 4th from 10:30am-12pm. Sign up is required by October 7th. Click here to view the series flyer or more information, please contact Erica Forest, LCSW at 914-644-8844.

Support Groups 

These support groups, facilitated by a licensed mental health professional, provide ongoing emotional and social support for those living with cancer.

  • Living with Cancer Group – A weekly group for adults who are recently diagnosed with cancer or in treatment.

The following groups, while also supportive, tend to be more informational and allow individuals with common concerns to exchange information that is specific to their cancer type and/or circumstance.

  • Breast Cancer Group
  • Gynecological Group
  • In the Pink Group – for young women living with breast cancer
  • Men’s Group – for men with any type of cancer
  • Multiple Myeloma Group
  • Parenting Group – for parents living with cancer who have children or teens. Also open to spouses and partners.
  • Post-Treatment Group
  • Prostate Cancer Group
  • Young Women with Breast Cancer Support Group – A bi-weekly group for young women who have had a breast cancer diagnosis.

Click here to view our Calendar of Support Groups

Healthy Lifestyle Workshops and Activities 

Educational lectures and healthy lifestyle workshops offer a chance to acquire skills, tools, information, and techniques for individuals living with cancer. The larger purpose of this is to regain control and well-being. All lectures take place at the Clubhouse and offer individuals the opportunity to build emotional and social bonds together. The Clubhouse is equipped with a spacious and light-filled exercise studio for physical activity classes (such as yoga and Pilates), an art studio for expressive arts classes, and a full kitchen for workshops on nutrition and healthy cooking.

Click here to view our Calendar of Lectures and Workshops

Social Events 

Social events are among the most popular activities at Gilda’s Club. During social activities individuals have the opportunity to gather with people who are going through similar situations, to let loose and have fun!

Click here to view our Calendar of Social Events

For more information on the programs we offer for individuals living with cancer, or to sign up for a support group or activity, please call 914.644.8844.