Assistance For Cancerrelated Problems

Cancer Care is a national nonprofit organization whose mission is to provide free professional help to people with all cancers through counseling, education, information and referral, and direct financial assistance. Cancer Care's Web site (<http://www. cancercare.org>) offers practical assistance to all patients and not specifically to patients with testicu-lar cancer. Since 1944, Cancer Care has been dedicated to providing emotional support, information, and practical help to people with cancer and their loved ones. As the oldest and largest national nonprofit agency devoted to offering professional services, Cancer Care has helped over two million people nationwide through its toll-free counseling telephone line (1 -800-813-HOPE) and teleconference programs, its office-based services, and via the Internet. All services are provided free of charge and are available to people of all ages, with all types of cancer, at any stage of the disease. Cancer Care's reach, including its cancer awareness initiatives, also extends to family members, caregivers, and professionals, providing vital information and assistance.

The National Coalition for Cancer Survivors (NCCS) is the only patient-led advocacy organization working on behalf of people with all types of cancer and their families. It is dedicated to assuring quality cancer care for all Americans. The NCCS (whose Web site address is <http://www.cansearch. org>) realizes that cancer survivors and those who care for them face many challenges. To help meet those challenges, the NCCS

1. serves as a clearinghouse for credible information about survivorship,

2. empowers cancer survivors through its publications and programs,

3. convenes other national cancer-related organizations, and

4. advocates for policy issues that affect survivors' quality of life.

The NCCS focuses on survivorship since the impact of cancer is a lifelong phenomenon. The advocacy policies of the NCCS include care of the patients and their families confronting all of the trying issues of living with cancer. The organization supplies resources such as the Cancer Survival Toolbox, a free award-winning audio program that teaches skills that can help people with cancer meet the challenges of their illness. The Toolbox includes a Basic Skills set that covers six important topics: communicating, finding information, making decisions, solving problems, negotiating, and standing up for your rights. In addition, the Toolbox includes three additional programs that cover topics for older persons, finding ways to pay for care, and caring for the caregiver.

The Wellness Community (TWC) is a national nonprofit organization that provides support, education, and hope to people with cancer and to their loved ones through professionally led support groups, educational workshops, and mind/body classes. The support groups use the "Patient Active Concept," in which people affected by cancer learn vital skills that enable them to regain control, reduce isolation, and restore hope, regardless of the stage of disease. The key concept of TWC is that patients and their families should become active participants in their cancer recovery, such that "people with cancer who participate in their fight for recovery from cancer will improve the quality of their life and may enhance the possibility of their recovery." At TWC, all local programs are free of charge and can be accessed through their Web site at <http://wellness-community.org>, which also contains a virtual "Wellness Community."

Candlelighters (<http://www.candlelighters.org>) is a national organization focusing on pediatric patients and has many local organizations that supply various resources, including support groups, social workers, and bereavement counseling.

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