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|Gilda's Club opens in Kansas City|
Facility provides a holistic approach to cancer healing
While actress Gilda Radner lived with ovarian cancer in the late '80s, she told friends and family that cancer “put her in an elite club that she’d rather not belong to.” After her death in 1989, her husband, Gene Wilder, movie critic Joel Siegel and personal therapist Joanna Bull worked to spin that club into a positive light.
The result was Gilda’s Club, a nationwide program that offers support for those living with cancer and their friends and family members. And Kansas City is now home to a chapter of the Club (21 W. 43rd St.), which held its ribbon cutting ceremony last month.
Gilda’s Club provides free membership and programs to all cancer patients and supporters, much in thanks to private contributions. The programs, including talk series by local professionals, meditation and knitting classes, support play-groups for children and immunity-boosting cooking classes, take a holistic approach to living with cancer instead of relying just on medical methods. The staff strive to craft a community rather than simply a medical facility.
Gilda's Club staff and members identify a sense of empowerment, which is fostered by the camaraderie created through its services, that complements medical care to aid those healing from cancer.