About Us

Cancer Support Community Delaware Impact Statement
Cancer Support Community Delaware has spent the past 28 years making our mission our tradition, by striving to ensure that all people impacted by cancer are empowered by knowledge, strengthened by action, and sustained by community. As a statewide nonprofit organization our support groups and programs are professionally led and are provided at no cost to help participants and caregivers cope with the emotional and life changing aspects of cancer.

Health Equity Statement
CSCDE’s health equity efforts center on three values: access, affordability, and inclusivity, offered at no-cost. Access to and inclusivity of programming and patient education around the importance of screenings, prevention, and healthy lifestyles, especially for those communities who have been historically underrepresented and under-resourced, is accomplished via in-person, hybrid, and virtual offerings. We also ensure access to and affordability of quality health care, to include the prevention and mitigation of financial toxicity; we address health-related social needs so that each patient, caregiver, and loved one impacted by cancer can engage with programs and services that meet their unique needs. We are intentional and thoughtful in our approach to serving each person throughout the state of Delaware innovatively and collaboratively throughout their cancer journey, as reflected by our internal team, board composition, CSCDE Health Equity Advisory Board, and longstanding partnerships with Delaware’s four major cancer centers.

CSC National Mission Statement (CSCDE is an affiliate of the Cancer Support Community National Organization)
CSC uplifts and strengthens people impacted by cancer by providing support, fostering compassionate communities, and breaking down barriers to care. https://www.cancersupportcommunity.org/

Other notable things about Cancer Support Community Delaware:

  • CSCDE provides statewide cancer support programs
  • All programs are led by licensed mental health professionals
  • More than 82% of the money we raise goes directly to programs
  • All services are offered free of charge
  • Money raised in Delaware, stays in Delaware!

Our Purpose
Our services are unique. We are the only organization in Delaware dedicated exclusively to helping people cope with and manage the emotional aspect of cancer, using the “patient active” concept. We also focus on the cancer participants’ family and/or caregivers, including children and teenagers.

Our History
The Cancer Support Community National, formerly The Wellness Community National, was founded in 1982 by Dr. Harold Benjamin in Santa Monica, California. Diagnosed with breast cancer in 1990, Cindy Dwyer teamed up with her friend Ellen Hamilton, to start a Cancer Support Community in Delaware (The Wellness Community Delaware). Motivated by a mutual friend, Mary Moller, and several other cancer survivors, a facility was opened in Wilmington, Delaware in 1996. Subsequently, facilities were opened in Dover in 2002 and in Rehoboth Beach in 2005.

On July 1, 2009, the Cancer Support Community joined forces with Gilda’s Club Worldwide to become the largest provider of psychosocial cancer support in North America. Our combined organization is comprised worldwide of nearly 50 local affiliates, 12 affiliates in development and over 100 off-site and satellite locations.

Our Programs
We provide weekly support groups facilitated by trained, licensed and experienced psychotherapists. At these meetings, people with cancer and their caregivers explore new ways of dealing with the physical and emotional problems associated with the disease. In addition, the following is a partial list of our offerings: Kids’ Circle; Teen Talk; Family Groups; Specific Cancer Site Groups; Introductory Meetings; Relaxation:Tai Chi; Yoga; Educational Workshops; Exercise; Nutrition Seminars; Art Therapy; Community-Based Program Initiative, working with the under-served population in downtown Wilmington; and Community Events.

Our Results
Evidence-based results from participants in our programs indicate that:

  • 88% felt less alone
  • 87% were happier because they were in group
  • 85% believed they improved the quality of their lives
  • 82% regained a sense of hope
  • 75% strengthened their will to live
  • 72% believed the relationship with their loved one(s) improved

Local Collaborations
We collaborate with all of the major doctors, hospitals, community and cancer organizations in the state.

Our Donors
Delaware Health Fund was and continues to be critical to our success in reaching all Delawareans. We also receive donations from corporations, foundations, individuals and special events.