I am currently an intern with the To Life! Organization. I have only been here for two weeks, working with the organization and seeing the services they have to offer to women in the community. Through my short time here so far I have talked to and meet people that have received support from To Life! and they have come back to help and give support to others and give back to the organization that helped them. All of the education and support activities are free of charge to breast cancer patients, caregivers, families and friends. To Life! offers many programs that are very beneficial and I am glad that I can be apart of an organization that gives to the community along with supporting and empowering people.
When I was initially diagnosed with Stage 1 breast cancer in 2001, I called To Life the following day and made an appointment to speak with a staff member who was also a survivor. The support I received from To Life when I needed it most was immediately available and extremely helpful. I knew that once I recovered that I wanted to give back to this wonderful organization and have been volunteering ever since. To Life provides an invaluable service to people receiving a diagnosis of breast cancer and their families. They provide education, support groups, one to one mentoring in addition to operating a boutique that assists cancer survivors who have lost their hair or require prosthesis. To Life is a critical resource to the Capital Region and surrounding counties and is recognized as such.
In my community is this wonderful organization, ToLife! that supports women with breast cancer and their families within 10 counties. As a Certified Healing Touch Practitioner, I offer Healing Touch sessions as part of ToLife!s realm of complementary approaches to health and well-being two afternoons a month. My personal experience with all the individuals at ToLife! is one of respect for all of the good works, efforts and most importantly the care and support they put into their daily contacts and activties. All of the education and support activities are free of charge to breast cancer patients, caregivers, families and friends. ToLife! offers many workshops on complementary approaches to health and wellness in addition to Healing Touch. These workshops and seminars include but not are limited to Yoga, Reiki and Massage Therapy. "Wellness from Within" programs are led by area healh care professionals and held routinely at ToLife! ToLife! aslso schedules various seminars and wellness programs in the evening and also have a presence at Health Fairs in the area. In support, onsite there is a boutique with displays of wig, bras, prostheses, etc. There are mentors who provide support and information by discussing their own experiences and answers to specific questions on what to expect during treatments. Personally many times with meeting these women and talking during in-take assessments, I have been in awe of them who are faced with this illness. These women have the grace and inner strength within them that enables them to stay positive and look for those things such as complementary therapies that ToLife! offers that will help them stay focused and relax and better help them to self-heal in anyway they can. I have been using volunteer time time offered by my employer, Bank of America since the fall of 2006. Individuals who have been made aware of Healing Touch sessions whether it be a flyer or ToLife!s newsletter or word of mouth call into ToLife!, they take the appointments and notify me of times scheduled and names of individuals.
Tell your story here and help others understand this charity I have attended this group through the worst of my diagnosis and treatment and have found invaluable support, information which has helped me to advocate for myself, and concrete resources. i credit this group with helping me to find the best possible treatment. It is essential for cancer patients to be empowered consumers and To Life has helped me achieve that.
My experience with To Life has been wonderful. Twenty months ago I was diagnosed with Stage III Breast Cancer and I can't even begin to tell you how devasted I was. After I learned about To Life and became involved with this wonderful organization, my feelings of hopelessness began to fade. The many free services provided by them has saved my life and my sanity. I think the yearly "Beat the Odds" program gave me the strength and courage to fight even harder to beat this horrific things called "Breast Cancer".
I was devastated when I was told I had breast cancer and had to have a masectomy. Someone told me about To Life and I went there to an exercise class that started with discussion and telling our stories. I had felt so alone before this meeting...afterward I felt tremendous support. It wasn't just the support of other people but also the concrete information that was provided....such as where to get a wig, masectomy bra (they have a boutique and caring people who help you). I was part of a group that continued to meet for years at one of the group members home. It provided the positive support I needed to feel confident and even be able to give back to the program as a volunteer.
This organization has an incredible leader, President and Founder Mara Ginsberg, an invaluable staff led by Executive Director, Laurie Abbott, dedicated volunteers and wonderful survivors who often, when they can, "pay it back" to the organization by mentoring or participating in events. To Life! is a small organization that packs a powerful punch! It is a wonderful, soothing place to spend time, to learn, to obtain needed things to make a survivor's life easier.