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Gilda's Club and The Wellness Community Join Forces

BY SUSAN MCCLURE | DECEMBER 14, 2009

The Wellness Community and Gilda's Club Worldwide have officially united and unveiled their new, combined identity--the Cancer Support Community. The Cancer Support Community will likely be the largest professionally-led network of cancer support worldwide. This is great news for cancer patients across the U.S. because it will expand the footprint of both organizations, thereby bringing more services to more communities. The new organization includes a network of nearly 50 local Gilda's Clubs and Wellness Community centers worldwide, more than 100 satellite locations and online support services that extend around the world.

"Our common history and commitment to the cancer community is what brought us together," said Kim Thiboldeaux, president and CEO of the Cancer Support Community. "This union creates a strong, vital, global network that will bring the highest quality cancer support to the millions of people touched by cancer."

These offerings include a comprehensive menu of personalized and essential services, including support groups, counseling, education and healthy lifestyle programs. Additionally, the organization is working to expand its vital services to meet the urgent needs of cancer patients and their loved ones. To ensure no one has to face cancer alone, these support services will soon be available to people in all 50 U.S. states and internationally through the Cancer Support Community's network of community-based centers, and at hospitals, community oncology practices and other non-profits, as well as online. The Cancer Support Community is also exploring the use of novel technologies, including mobile, to help extend the reach of these meaningful resources.

I have had the privilege of visiting the Gilda's Club in Dallas several times and am impressed by the variety of support services available to patients and their families. This new union will make those services even more spectacular.

I only have one problem with all of this... the new name. The Cancer Support Community? Really? Gilda's Club and The Wellness Community are such well-known brands in the cancer world. The new name doesn't play off either of them. It's like Coca-Cola and Pepsi joining forces to become Bubble Water. Can't we do better? My colleague, Jeremy Heath recommends changing the name to Wilda's Community. Hmmmm.

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COMMENTS

Gilda's Wellness Society?
- Posted by Jack 12/16/09 4:52 PM

Hey! Not bad!
- Posted by Susanm 12/17/09 11:23 AM

I am glad to see the word gettting out about our merger! As the CEO of this combined entity, I am thrilled by what this union represents. We are working to ensure that ALL people impacted by cancer have access to the highest quality support and education services. The 2007 IOM Report, "Cancer Care for the Whole Patient" says that people with cancer deserve no less.

Now, on the matter of the name, I want to clarify that the new name applies to the umbrella headquarters office and that most of our local affiliates - Gilda's Clubs and Wellness Communitites - will retain their name and co-brand with the new HQ name, Cancer Support Community. So, you will not see Gilda's and Wellness going away. You will also see much of the personality and quality standards of both organizations infused into our new HQ name, Cancer Support Community. So, I hope that clarifies things. Best wishes for joyous and health holiday season! Kim Thiboldeaux
- Posted by Kim Thiboldeaux 12/23/09 8:04 AM

Glad to hear our Gilda's Club down the street will stay the same ... only better!
- Posted by elizabethw 12/23/09 10:31 AM

Great insight. Thanks!
- Posted by cristi 3/18/10 9:20 AM

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