A significant proportion of esca members are breast cancer patients and survivors. Bosom Pals was launched to provide specialised support to these women. Bosom Pals organises :
- informative talks from breast health experts and other professionals
- healthy activities
- fun outings
- informal get-togethers such as pot-luck suppers
Throughout the year, the Bosom Pals come together to participate in specific activities.
A special breast cancer survivor team called The Breast Strokers is formed for esca’s annual PADDLEforCANCER Dragonboat Festival.
In 2009, they made it to the finals of the All Female category! Bosom Pals and other esca volunteers come together as well to walk as a group in Geneva’s Escalade Walk from Veyrier to Old Town.
The climax of the year is October’s Breast Cancer Awareness Month, as Bosom Pals work together with other local groups on many awareness activities. Bosom Pals is a member of Reach to Recovery International and the Reseau du cancer du sein in Geneva.
Coffee Anyone ?!
Informal coffee mornings are organized on a regular basis and take place in the esca Drop-in Centre. Bosom Pals are invited to come along, chat over coffee, and share valuable experiences with others. The gatherings take place usually on the last Friday of the month at 10:00-12:00.
A Bosom Pals 15-week physical activity program twice a year especially designed for women who have had breast cancer, led by a licensed physical therapist, Karin De Lamarter. Karin is also fondly known as the “Queen of Torture”, although her class seem to be smiling in the picture below!
To find out more please contact bosompals by email.
Bosom Pals Structured Support Groups
Bosom Pals offers structured support groups if there are at least five people interested in participating in such a group. The structured group’s main goals are to :
- share experiences and common concerns relating to the cancer diagnosis
- learn from each other
- discuss, in a caring and supportive environment, specific issues of concern
Each session is dedicated to a specific topic, depending on the group’s wishes. Suggested topics have included include ‘Coping Strategies’, ‘Existential Issues’, ‘Spirituality’, ‘Relationship and Family Issues’, ‘Work’, ‘Self-Identity’ and ‘Sexual Issues’.
Although each session is governed by a certain topic, the group is run neither in a workshop nor in a lecture format. Rather, the topic serves to focus the discussion, and provides an opportunity to share and discuss the participants’ personal experiences and views relating to the topic.
The group usually meets every second week, for six sessions, at the YWCA in Grand Saconnex. The dates and time for the six sessions are determined according to the schedule and availability of interested participants.
Opportunity to volunteer
If you are a breast cancer survivor and would like to accompany women who are newly diagnosed, please sign up to be an esca volunteer specifying your wish to be a Bosom Pals supporter. Thank you in advance.