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CompassionConnects

Using technology to connect
with cancer survivors

Featuring a resource directory and content from both women who have lived experiences with cancer treatment and health professionals, CompassionConnects allows past guests to stay connected to our community and access a multitude of resources from the comfort of their own home. Topics addressed include: mental health and wellness, nutrition and exercise, managing treatment side effects, family and peer support, and more!

CompassionConnects helps to:

Reduce isolation

Increase overall wellness

Support mental health

Resource Directory

Check out this comprehensive list of cancer-specific resources for Albertans and rural Canadians. Both online and in-person resources are featured with everything from mental health support to online exercise videos to nutritious recipes!

If you see a correction or addition that needs to be made to this Resource Directory, please let us know

National
Organizations

The Canadian Breast Cancer Network (CBCN)

The Canadian Breast Cancer Network (CBCN) is Canada’s leading patient-directed organization of individuals concerned about breast cancer. They support and promote the concerns of breast cancer patients through education, advocacy activities, and the information sharing. Their website provides a variety of great reading materials including publications and blogs.

The Canadian Cancer Society

The Canadian Cancer Society is a national, community-based organization of staff and volunteers whose mission is the eradication of cancer and the enhancement of the quality of life of people living with cancer. Their website is a great resource to access for trusted information regarding cancer support services, treatments, and education.

The Canadian Partnership Against Cancer

The Canadian Partnership Against Cancer is an independent organization funded by the federal government to accelerate action on cancer control for all Canadians. Check out their website for informative Cancer Guidelines and other tools to help you navigate your cancer journey.

Ovarian Cancer Canada

Ovarian Cancer Canada champions the health and wellbeing of women with ovarian cancer and others at risk of this disease while advancing research to save lives. The organization provides leadership in research, advocacy, and support, so that women live fuller, better, longer lives.

Rethink Breast Cancer

Rethink Breast Cancer is a young women’s breast cancer movement based in Toronto that educates, empowers and advocates for people worldwide through boldfaced campaigns, content, programs, and resources.

Provincial
Organizations

Alberta Cancer Foundation

Alberta Cancer Foundation provides information, education, and support to Albertan’s facing cancer. They have a Patient Navigator program which provides assistance to rural Albertans navigating the healthcare system as well as a variety of other Alberta-specific cancer information!

Alberta Clinical Trials

Alberta Clinical Trials aims to build an efficient, robust, and sustainable clinical trial system to allow more patients than ever the opportunity to participate in clinical trials. The “Patient” section of their website provides easy-read information regarding available clinical trials for patients interested.

Breast Cancer Supportive Care (BCSC)

Breast Cancer Supportive Care (BCSC) is a multidisciplinary clinic committed to providing medical care and support to breast cancer patients, those at high risk for breast cancer, and their families. They offer virtual and in-person consultations to help breast cancer patients navigate their cancer journey.

Control Cancer Alberta

Control Cancer Alberta provides detailed educational resources for patients. They have a multitude of guidelines to help patients who are newly diagnosed, who are currently undergoing treatment, and who have finished treatment, navigate the cancer journey.

Cancer Clinics in Central & Northern Alberta

Barrhead Community Cancer Centre

The Barrhead Community Cancer Centre is located within the Barrhead Healthcare Centre.

Bonnyville Community Cancer Centre

The Bonnyville Community Cancer Centre is located within the Bonnyville Health Centre.

Central Alberta Cancer Centre

The Central Alberta Cancer Centre is located within Red Deer Hospital.

Cross Cancer Institute

Located in Edmonton, the Cross Cancer Institute is Northern Alberta’s only comprehensive cancer centre and a leader in innovative cancer treatment.

Fort McMurray Community Cancer Centre

The Fort McMurray Community Cancer Centre is located within the Northern Lights Regional Health Centre.

Grande Prairie Cancer Centre

The Grande Prairie Cancer Centre is located within the Queen Elizabeth II Hospital.

High River Community Cancer Centre

The High River Community Cancer Centre is located within the High River General Hospital.

Hinton Community Cancer Centre

The Hinton Community Cancer Centre is located within the Hinton General Hospital.

Lloydminster Community Cancer Centre

The Lloydminster Community Cancer Centre is located within the Lloydminster Hospital.

Peace River Community Cancer Centre

The Peace River Community Cancer Centre is located within the Peace River Community Health Centre.

Primary Care Network McLeod River

The Primary Care Network McLeod River serves Edson, Whitecourt, Fox Creek Mayerthorpe, and surrounding areas.

Seton-Jasper Healthcare Centre

The Seton-Jasper Healthcare Centre offers physical therapy services for people with cancer.

Mental Health

Cancer Care Ontario: Anxiety Patient Guide

Download the free Cancer Care Ontario: Anxiety Patient Guide intended for people who have anxiety before, during or after cancer treatment. It can be used by patients, family, friends or caregivers.

Cancer Research UK: Coping with Cancer

Navigate this webpage to find a multitude of resources for managing a cancer diagnosis. There is everything from breathing and relaxation techniques, to tips for family members, to emotional coping strategies.

Insight Psychological

Insight Psychological offers cancer-specific counselling at various locations in Alberta in addition to online counselling!

UCLA Mindful Awareness Research Center: Free Guided Mediation

Check out a series of FREE guided meditations for an introduction to mindfulness and deep breathing. For a more in-depth class experience, they also offer online 6-week classes.

wellspring

wellspring offers a variety of mental health programs, including meditation programs and support groups that have moved online! Also check out their “The Healing Journey”, an online course designed to help with depression, anxiety and other symptoms.

Nutrition

Alberta Health Services

The Alberta Health Services: Nutrition Guide includes healthy eating tips, information on how to access nutrition counseling, and even some tasty recipes.

Canadian Cancer Society

Find recipes for soups, pastas, smoothies, baked goods, roasts, and more!

Cancer Control Alberta: Nutrition Education Resources

These Nutrition Education Resources provide consistent, evidence-based resources for key nutrition topics. Topics addressed include how to add protein to your diet, nutrition supplementation, eating when you have taste and smell changes, and more.

College of Dieticians of Alberta

The College of Dieticians of Alberta outlines steps and contacts to find a certified cancer-specific dietitian in Alberta in addition to providing other public nutrition resources.

Power of Nutrition

Power of Nutrition is a class located at the Central Alberta Cancer Centre and the Cross Cancer Institute for patients and families to learn about staying at a healthy body weight during cancer treatments and how foods can help manage the side effects of cancer treatments.

Stanford Health Care: Nutritious Recipes for Cancer Patients

Oncology-certified registered dietitians at the Stanford Cancer Center provide recipes and nutrition tips for cancer treatment, recovery, and prevention. Diet plans outlining what to eat during chemotherapy and radiation are even provided.

wellspring Virtual Nutrition Programs

wellspring Virtual Nutrition Programs offer both online classes and nutritious recipes to help you learn what foods to eat while undergoing cancer treatment and recovery.

Exercise

Alberta Cancer Exercise (ACE)

Alberta Cancer Exercise (ACE) is a free 12-week community-based exercise program designed specifically for individuals undergoing or recovering from cancer treatment.

BC Cancer

BC Cancer offers educational resources on exercise before, during, and after cancer treatment, as well as recommendations on how much exercise is safe to do, what types of exercise you should focus on, and more.

Surviving to Thriving Program

Surviving to Thriving is a FREE exercise program for cancer survivors located in Edson. The program runs twice weekly with an additional education session.

wellspring Virtual Cancer-Specific Exercise Programs

Check out these online exercise classes. Different yoga classes are offered in addition to Qigong–an integrated practice known to nourish physical, mental, emotional and spiritual dimensions of health and wellbeing.

Cancer Control Alberta: 3-Minute Movement Videos

A team at the Health & Wellness Lab at the University of Calgary made these exercise videos focusing on cardio, yoga, and upper/lower body strength training. All you need is a chair!

Leading Edge Physiotherapy – Cancer Rehabilitation Clinic

The Leading Edge Physiotherapy Cancer Rehabilitation Clinic offers a range of services including lymphedema management, exercise programs, peripheral neuropathy treatment, vestibular therapy, scar tissue management, and general pain management. These services are available both in-person in Edmonton and virtually.

University of Calgary Health and Wellness Lab

The Health and Wellness Lab conducts research and develops movement-based programs, including exercise and yoga, to help those with cancer move from surviving to thriving. Check out a rich assortment of resources, including exercise manuals, infographics, and videos to get moving today!

Thrive Health

Check out these evidence-based exercise resources for cancer survivors from Thrive Health. They have a FREE comprehensive Thriver Manual to make movement and wellness a part of your cancer journey, as well as infographics, tip-sheets, and more!

Knight's Cabin

Knight’s Cabin offers cancer survivors retreats that provide information and explore practical skills to assist survivors in living well beyond cancer. There are guided hikes, yoga, and workshops on nutrition, meal preparation, and stress and sleep management techniques. Starting in Spring 2021, they will also begin the peer-led initiative WALK IT OUT, which blends the restorative benefits of physical activity with the companionship of people walking in the same shoes.

Resources for Families

National Cancer Institute

National Cancer Institute – Support for Caregivers of Cancer Patients is an educational webpage providing tips for caregivers to help manage the demands of caregiving and prevent burnout.

BC Cancer

BC Cancer – Family Support has information, handouts, workbooks, and weblinks for supporting children, teens, and caregivers with cancer in the family.

American Cancer Society Caregiver Resource Guide

The American Cancer Society Caregiver Resource Guide is a tool for people who are caring for someone with cancer. It provides information both on how to support your loved ones and yourself during the cancer journey.

wellspring Caregiver Connect

wellspring Caregiver Connect is a four-week program where caregivers share their stories and experiences and leaders present self-care techniques and identify steps to enhance or lighten each caregiver’s role and responsibilities.

Support Groups

Sisters in Cancer Support Group

This support group is located in Fort McMurray. Contact sistersincancerymm@gmail.com for more information.

Grande Prairie and Area Breast Cancer Support Group

Check out their Facebook page for more information.

The Jasper County Cancer Support

The Jasper County Cancer Support is a volunteer group that raises money to help people with cancer in the Jasper Community. They can help with medical appointments, getting groceries, and more! Check out their Facebook page for more information.

Whitecourt Cancer & Wellness Society

The Whitecourt Cancer & Wellness Society supports healthcare workers and residence that are living with, recovered from, or assisting someone with cancer in Whitecourt. You can reach them at:

Box 951, Whitecourt, AB, T7S 1N9
wctcancerwellness@gmail.com
780-778-5540 ext. 227
Facebook

Cancer Support Group Red Deer

Check out their Facebook page for more information.

National Cervical Cancer Coalition Support Group & Forum - Inspire

Connect with others affected by cervical cancer and HPV diseases for information about detection, prevention, treatment, and emotional support in this support group and discussion community. Through this community, you’ll join thousands of patients and caregivers in sharing personal experiences in a safe, secure environment.

Cancer Chat Canada

Take part in free professionally-led online support groups for Canadians affected by cancer, including patients, survivors and family members. Sessions are typed (text-based, no voice/audio) and take place in real-time, providing emotional support and a place to safely discuss personal topics.

Rethink Young Women's Network (RYWN)

Based in Toronto, be sure to check out the Rethink Young Women’s Network (RYWN) from Rethink Breast Cancer. This closed online group provides a safe space for community and conversation amongst young women experiencing breast cancer.

For more help finding Cancer Support Groups in your community, check out the Canadian Cancer Society resources.

Additional Resources

Online Resources/Videos

Check out these videos from Alberta Health Services on cancer-specific nutrition, physical exercise, counselling/support, and more!

Sources of Help for People with Cancer in Alberta

Check out this comprehensive document, with everything from LGBTQ cancer support groups, to fertility resources, to online counselling, and much more!

Energize

Energize is a class located at the Central Alberta Cancer Centre for patients who are struggling with cancer-related fatigue.

Neatly Nourished Cleaning Services

Neatly Nourished Cleaning Services in Red Deer has partnered with the non-profit ‘Cleaning For A Reason’ to help provide affordable cleaning services to people battling and recovering from cancer in Red Deer.

Managing Shortness of Breath Guide

Download this FREE guide from Cancer Care Ontario intended to help manage shortness of breath before, during, or after cancer treatment. It can be used by patients, family, friends or caregivers.

Shoppers Drug Mart – Look Good Feel Better Program

Cosmetic professionals with the Shoppers Drug Mart – Look Good Feel Better Program offer the finest in skin care, wig selection and makeup techniques each designed to encourage women to look and feel their best.

Virtual workshops are now available! Register online or at 1-800- 914-5665.

CompassionConnects was developed with support from the Peter Lougheed Leadership College’s unique undergraduate program at the University of Alberta.

CompassionConnects is supported by the Government of Canada’s Emergency Community Support Fund and Edmonton Community Foundation.

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January 28, 2021: When is it Safe to Exercise After my Cancer Diagnosis?

Inspiring Speakers Series

Our Inspiring Speakers Series is about starting important conversations on the many ways cancer impacts patients, families, and caregivers.

These free, virtual sessions take place throughout the year, each on a different topic. Speakers include a health professional with relevant expertise and experience, as well as a cancer survivor who previously stayed at Sorrentino’s Compassion House.

Stories from the Women of Compassion House

Past guests of Sorrentino’s Compassion House share their experiences with cancer treatment and recovery. They voice their authentic experiences with a cancer diagnosis while also sharing what helped them heal both their body and mind.

Are you a cancer survivor or health expert who would like to contribute to CompassionConnects? Get in touch!

Publications from
Health Experts

Psychologists, physicians, dieticians, and researchers share their expert advice for managing cancer treatment and improving recovery. Easily accessible to a broad audience, these resources will provide you with trusted information and key take-aways to assist you throughout the cancer journey.

Support Women Battling Cancer

Need to book by phone?
780-425-7224 or 1-888-425-7474