A cancer diagnosis can lead to feelings of stress and anxiousness in many areas of a person’s life. Yet, less than one-third of individuals living with cancer receive appropriate counseling and support. These numbers are even more staggering when considering underserved populations. Gilda’s Club Westchester is working to meet the needs of these individuals by expanding our programs beyond our Clubhouse.
Through the hotline, individuals affected by cancer will be able to receive phone counseling from a Gilda’s Club licensed mental health professional—all completely free of charge.
“We are thrilled to offer this free bilingual cancer support hotline,” says Melissa Lang, CEO of Gilda’s Club Westchester. “By removing barriers to care, such as transportation, child care and language constraints, it allows us to provide critical support to those living with cancer in underserved areas of Westchester and put them in touch with a range of long-term resources in our community.”
One-on-one counseling provides individuals affected by cancer the opportunity to discuss their current areas of difficulty in relation to their cancer diagnosis with the goal of decreasing emotional distress. For example, many women have trouble communicating their fears and anxieties to loved ones, in addition to concerns about work, body image and intimacy. During the phone sessions, a licensed mental health professional will also work with individuals to identify strategies for coping and next steps in their psychosocial treatment.
“I think this hotline is a great way to reach those who wouldn’t otherwise have access to these supportive resources, and I’m thrilled to combine my background with the important work that Gilda’s Club Westchester does to bring cancer support out into the community and meet people where they are,” says Bilingual Hotline Counselor Martha Lee Mellis, LCSW.
Please caall 914-997-6006 to speak with a licensed mental health professional in English or Spanish, and access counseling and resources over the phone.
Funding for this hotline was provided by the New York State Department of Health and the Breast Cancer Alliance.