Since 2007, the Gilda’s Club Westchester School-Based Program has worked with schools across the county, and more than 90% of the students we’ve seen report that they know someone who has or had cancer. Despite this, many students feel alone in their cancer experiences and have many unanswered questions.
Cancer • Learning • And • Social/Emotional • Support
Gilda’s Goes to School
The last thing a child wants is to be seen as “different” among his or her peers. Yet cancer has the ability to re-define a child’s identity in the eyes of others and to create feelings of isolation. From difficulties concentrating on schoolwork to struggling with peer relationships, the pressures of dealing with cancer can have a lasting impact into adulthood.
Because Gilda’s Club Westchester knows that children impacted by cancer have specific needs, we created this program in 2007 to bring specialized cancer education and support into schools. Geared towards elementary, middle and high schools throughout Westchester, Rockland and lower Fairfield counties, Gilda’s CLASS (Cancer Learning And Social/Emotional Support) enables our trained professionals to work closely with school districts to tailor unique cancer support and educational programs.
Gilda’s CLASS is a comprehensive resource designed to bring support and education beyond our clubhouse into your school, free of charge.
We offer free support and education to school professionals, students and parents.
Gilda’s CLASS provides interactive classroom presentations, lectures and workshops for children and teens impacted by cancer, designed to reduce anxiety and dispel misconceptions about cancer. School professionals have online access to a comprehensive, accurate, cancer-based curriculum plus direct social and emotional support when a student or coworker is impacted by cancer in their school or district. Our staff is also available to speak to parents whose children are impacted by cancer, addressing concerns from how to talk to their children about cancer to how children at different developmental stages understand cancer.
If you are a school professional or parent and would like to speak to a program staff member to learn more about how Gilda’s CLASS can bring support and education into your school, please contact us at 914-644-8844 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
“I walked into Gilda’s Club Westchester and immediately felt at ease, enveloped in a space of integrity, honesty and warmth, where people were open to sharing thoughts expressing worries and exploring ways of healing. I had gone to the cancer Symposium to discover additional ways to support my student who was diagnosed with cancer earlier this school year and the rest of my class, and I left that afternoon empowered with ideas for activities and discussions that are meaningful and lasting, and support our entire school community. Gilda’s Club Westchester has a way of addressing difficult situations with such heartfelt honesty that the stories became shared expressions of hope and healing”
“This was my favorite health class.”
“I personally believe that this program should be in every school district so that school professionals, parents and students can learn about cancer and understand the importance of emotional and social support.”