Hamsa Wellness Community Updates from past 3 months

By SuperUser Account on 7/5/2024

As somebody who supports the Hamsa Wellness Community (HWC), (formerly known as Sharsheret Supports STL) I want to share a few updates from the past three months.  Before I tell you what we’ve been up to, I need to thank each of you for your generosity and commitment. Whether it’s by giving of your time, participating in a program, and/or supporting us financially, we greatly appreciate each and every one of you. We couldn’t do this without you.

2nd quarter highlights: 

  1. HWC received $20,000 in grant funding. From the St. Louis Men’s Group Against Cancer, we received funding that was double what we have received in the past and we made a first time ask to the Missouri Baptist Healthcare Foundation and received the entire amount requested. 
  2. Strength Over Cancer is off to a great start. We are coming to the end of our 2nd 11-week offering and we’re already ½ full for the next session. To date, we have taken 23 participants through the program, who were accompanied by 5 buddies.

“This class has helped me push myself in a fun, supportive environment so that my strength and stamina have improved. I feel more confident and will feel more comfortable taking another exercise class in the future.” (class participant)

  1. We welcomed seven first-time participants in Yoga for Cancer.

“Yoga for Cancer not only helped me to open my body and release much-needed tension and anxiety, but it allowed me to be a part of a new community of people who I have remained close with. It is a safe space and an extremely calming environment to help my mind and body relax.”  (class participant)

  1. We welcomed six new women in our monthly breast and ovarian cancer support group. Something we’ve heard more than once “The support group was excellent and exactly what I didn’t know I needed.”
  2. On April 4th we hosted “Genetics and Hereditary Cancer: Let’s Learn Together in partnership with Cancer Support community and St. Louis Ovarian Cancer Awareness. The program featured a cancer genetics counselor and a gynecologic oncologist. We had over 60 people register. Here are a few of the responses we received when asked what was the most important learnings for you?
    1. How testing improved and I should schedule time with a genetic counselor
    2. The importance of males in my family getting genetic testing
    3. Following through on genetic testing for lynch syndrome
    4. Take the genetic test again even though I took it back in 2007.
  3. We hired and trained a 2nd oncology massage therapist.  
  4. We participated in Wash U’s Breast Cancer SPORES session as a community/patient advocate, and we facilitated a program at Wash U for students trying to navigate college life while supporting a parent diagnosed with cancer from afar.  

A glimpse of what lies ahead.

  1. Lynnie’s Light for Life will take place on Wednesday, Sept 4th.
  2. Beyond Pink will take place on Sunday, October 27th.
  3. We are close to confirming a program in partnership with the J’s Book Festival. In a funny and heartfelt memoir, an author will recount losing both parents to cancer and the choices she made to avoid her own diagnosis.
  4. Continue dialogue with the J’s fitness team to design Strength Over Cancer Part 2 for those who completed the 11-week session and want more. Getting lots of requests.
  5. Ongoing discussions on ways to make Oncology Massage available at a lower price point. Currently, this is the only HWC offering that has a fee.

As I always say, it takes a village.