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Virtual Programs and Services – Winter 2021

We are currently offering the following free online programs and telehealth services for patients with cancer and their family members and caregivers.

Facebook Live Medical Discussions

Participate in weekly cancer-related discussions with top oncology physicians and clinicians on Facebook Live.

Upcoming discussions:

Tuesday, January 19, 1:00 pm
Pelvic Floor Therapy: Is it for you?
Jamie Justice, PT, WCS, Empower Women’s Health & Wellness

Monday, February 8, 10:30 am
Rise in Tonsillar Cancer: What’s Behind It?
Dr. Arpi Thukral, Radiation Oncology, Radiation Oncology Consultants, Northwestern Medicine

Wednesday, February 17, 1:00 pm
Your Metabolic Health and Your Risk of Cancer
Dr. Elizabeth Lowden, Bariatric Endocrinology, Northwestern Medicine Regional Medical Group, and Dr. Christopher George, Medical Director, Medical Oncology, Northwestern Medicine Regional Medical Group

Monday, March 1, 6:30 – 8:00 pm (This live presentation will be broadcast via Microsoft Teams)
I’ve Finished Cancer Treatment. What Now? Survivorship 101
Dr. Christopher George, Medical Director, Medical Oncology, Northwestern Medicine Regional Medical Group (To register and receive a link to join this virtual presentation, e-mail info@livingwellcrc.org and include your first and last name and “Survivorship 101” in your subject line.)

Friday, March 5, 1:00 pm
New Lymphedema Surgery Options for Patients with Breast Cancer
Sumanas Jordan, MD, PhD, Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Northwestern Medicine

Thursday, March 11, 1:00 pm
What is Advanced Care Planning and How does Palliative Medicine Fit in the Equation?
Dr. Mark Speyer, Palliative Medicine, Northwestern Medicine Regional Medical Group

Tuesday, March 16, 1:00 pm
The Basics of Sleep and Sleep Improvement While Living with a Cancer Diagnosis
Dr. Kuljeet Gill, Sleep Medicine, Northwestern Medicine Regional Medical Group

Tuesday, April 6, 1:00 pm
What Causes Cancer?
Dr. Robert Bayer, Hematology and Medical Oncology, Northwestern Medicine Regional Medicine Group

Wednesday, April 28, 1:00 pm
Integrative Medicine: What Is It and How Can It Benefit Patients with Cancer?
Elizabeth Addington, PhD, Psychology, Northwestern Medical Group, Assistant Professor of Medical Social Sciences, Feinberg School of Medicine

Watch previous Facebook Live discussions.

Fitness and Yoga Classes

Take weekly online classes with LivingWell fitness/yoga instructors. For links to each class, please contact info@livingwellcrc.org. (To participate, you must have a current LivingWell New Participant Form and Medical Release Form on file and have a cancer diagnosis date within the last three years or have a metastatic diagnosis.)

Watch on-demand recordings of LivingWell fitness and yoga classes at bit.ly/LWFitnessYogaYouTube.

Mondays, 9:00 – 10:00 am, Yoga with Sheri Minnick
Learn yoga postures that will reduce stress, increase flexibility, and support your healing and sleep. Both standing and mat yoga poses will be incorporated.

Mondays, 10:00 – 10:45 am, Chair Yoga with Sheri Minnick
Learn to increase balance, flexibility, mobility, stamina and strength while connecting with your body and its movements.

Tuesdays, 10:00 – 10:45 am, Chair Fitness for Cancer Recovery with Jennifer Artman
Movements in this class are designed to increase strength and get the lymphatic system flowing. For this class, we will be using a set of dumbbells. As an alternative, you can use soup cans, bottles of water, or something similar.

New! Tuesdays, 10:45 – 11:15 am, Core and Pelvic Muscle Strength with Susan Litviak
Lower abdominal cancer treatment can cause incontinence, affect sexual function or cause pelvic organ prolapse in men and women. In this mat-based class, you will practice exercises to stretch and strengthen core and pelvic muscles, and minimize these common side effects of cancer. 

Tuesdays, 11:00 – 11:30 am, Balance and Core Fitness with Jennifer Artman
Improve balance and core strength, and develop strong and supportive hip stabilizer and abdominal muscles. Exercises in this class will be performed standing.

New! Tuesdays, 11:30 – 12:30 pm, Yoga with Susan Litviak
Learn yoga postures that will reduce stress, increase flexibility, and support your healing and sleep. Both standing and mat yoga poses will be incorporated.

Wednesdays, 9:15 – 10:00 am, Beginner Tai Chi with Sheri Minnick
Focus on using breath in combination with Tai Chi movements to allow physical body stressors and anxiety to be released.

Wednesdays, 10:00 – 11:00 am, Gentle and Restorative Yoga with Sheri Minnick
Enjoy a yoga class that will focus on your breathing, a full body warmup, gentle movements and end with a guided relaxation.

New! Wednesdays, 4:45 – 5:15 pm, Circuit Training for Bone Health with Jennifer Artman
Individuals de-conditioned by cancer treatment and those who have osteoporosis/osteopenia can be prone to falls and fractures. This standing class will emphasize timed strength training intervals of various exercises to help increase bone density. Class will include a warm up, individually guided circuit weight training (you make it as challenging as you need) and cool down. We will be using a set of dumbbells. As an alternative, you can use soup cans, bottles of water, or something similar.

New! Wednesdays, 5:30 – 6:30 pm, Yoga with Mary Keane
Learn yoga postures that will reduce stress, increase flexibility, and support your healing and sleep. Both standing and mat yoga poses will be incorporated.

Thursdays, 10:00 – 10:45 am, Fitness for Cancer Recovery with Jennifer Artman
Manage the side effects of treatment through exercise. Increase strength, stamina and balance. In this class, we will be using a set of dumbbells. As an alternative, you can use soup cans, bottles of water, or something similar.

Thursdays, 11:00 – 11:45 am, Core and Flexibility with Jennifer Artman
Increase balance, flexibility and core strength. Modifications will be given for those with physical limitations. Both standing and mat-based exercises will be performed. Please have a yoga or pilates mat for this class.

New! Fridays, 10:30 – 11:30 am, Yoga with Rita Meier
Learn yoga postures that will reduce stress, increase flexibility, and support your healing and sleep. Both standing and mat yoga poses will be incorporated.

Counseling and Social Work

Counseling: The emotional experience of cancer treatment can be as challenging as the physical experience. Our team of Licensed Clinical Professional Counselors can help patients and caregivers talk about their thoughts, feelings, and reactions to a diagnosis. To schedule an initial consultation or telephone counseling session, please email counseling@livingwellcrc.org.

Social Work: LivingWell’s licensed social workers connect patients to resources and education to help reduce stress and remove barriers to care. Resources are available to help with transportation and lodging, managing household finances and employment challenges. Social workers are also available to help patients and caregivers cope after a diagnosis and treatment changes. To connect with a LivingWell social worker, please email socialwork@livingwellcrc.org.

Grief Programs

Grief Writing Workshop
Thursday, January 21, 6:30 – 8:00 pm
Join coach, author and speaker, John Polo, along with LivingWell Counselor, Christine McMinn, LCPC, CT, as John leads a virtual workshop to show how writing and journaling can aid in grief and the healing process. John will explain how writing helped him after the loss of his wife, and will walk you through various writing prompts so you can see if it can help you, too.
To register and receive a link to join this virtual presentation, e-mail info@livingwellcrc.org and include your first and last name and “Grief Writing Workshop” in your subject line.

Love After Loss: Dating as a Widowed Person
Thursday, February 25, 6:30 – 8:00 pm
Are you thinking about dating again? Or, have you already started? It’s a lot to take in, isn’t it? When should I start to date? How do I even date? Will others judge me for dating? How will anyone accept the love I have for my late spouse? Should I tell them right away? Are you riddled with guilt, or fear? Yeah,  I figured. Let’s discuss. Join LivingWell Counselor, Christine McMinn, LCPC, CT, as she welcomes back coach, author and speaker, John Polo in this 90-minute virtual workshop where we will explore Love After Loss.
To register and receive a link to join this virtual presentation, e-mail info@livingwellcrc.org and include your first and last name and “Love After Loss” in your subject line.

Survivorship Programs

Back-On-Track Surviving Survivorship Series
Mondays, February 1 – March 15, 6:30 – 7:45 pm.
Many patients find themselves wondering, “Now what?” after their cancer treatment ends. This seven-week online “Back-on-Track: Surviving Survivorship” series, presented by Missy Petty, LCPC, is designed to help both patients and caregivers navigate the challenges people experience as they transition into survivorship. Topics include: changes in relationships, managing expectations, addressing anxiety and depression, the “new normal,” fear of recurrence, how to partner with your primary care physician and other providers, managing your health records, and envisioning a positive future. Attendance throughout the entire free series is encouraged but not mandatory.

February 1: Pressure to Thrive
February 8:  Discussion Group
February 15: Managing Moods, Stress, Feeling Stuck
February 22: Discussion Group
March 1: Survivorship Toolkit
March 8: Fear of Recurrence
March 15: Envisioning Your Future

To register and receive the link to join this virtual series, email info@livingwellcrc.org and include your first and last name and “Survivorship Series” in your subject line.

Stress Management

Learn How to Meditate Series
Tuesdays, January 12 – February 16, 1:30 – 2:30 pm
Limited to six students
Meditation is a simple process, however, it is best to learn to meditate from experience. LivingWell yoga and wellness instructor, Sheri Minnick, MS, E-RYT, YACEP, ACE GFI, teaches this six-week series based on the book, “Moving Inward: The Journey to Meditation” by Rolf Sovik, PsyD. Each participant will receive this book prior to the start of class at no cost. During the six-week series you will learn how to establish a daily meditation practice, recognize fear, take steps to free yourself from worries, and experience the joy of being fully present in the here and now. Please note: This is a progressive series, and you must be committed to attending all six sessions to receive full benefit.

To register and receive the link to join this virtual series, email info@livingwellcrc.org and include your first and last name and “Meditation” in the subject line.

Cultivating a Journaling Practice
Wednesdays, March 3, 10, 17, 24, 2-3:30 pm
Limited to eight students
This four-week series presented by Christine McMinn, LCPC CT and Cheri Hunt, Art Instructor, is aimed at helping you develop an art and journaling practice or deepen yours if you already have one. This class is designed to educate you on the benefits of journaling, empower you to start exploring your thoughts and feelings related to the impact of cancer diagnosis on your life, and provide you with the skills, strengths, and strategies to continue your practice long after you complete this series. We’ll incorporate journaling prompts, offer space for writing and reflection, explore how art can enhance your journaling practice and provide you with opportunity to connect, share and learn from others in class.

 To register and receive the link to join this virtual series, email info@livingwellcrc.org and include your first and last name and “Journaling” in the subject line.

Art Classes

Through a cancer journey, art is such a beautiful way to express yourself, explore untapped creativity, manage stress and help you connect with others. All LivingWell classes are facilitated by our art instructor, Cheri Hunt, and no previous art experience is required. Supply lists will be emailed to you prior to the start of class.

Line and Marker Drawing
Wednesdays, January 13, 20, 27, 10:00 – 11:30 am
A no-pressure drawing series to come and lose yourself in the fine art of distraction. During the month of January, make a self portrait, create optical art and Zentangle together. Attendance throughout this three-class series is encouraged but not mandatory.
To register and receive the link to join this virtual series, email info@livingwellcrc.org and include your first and last name, dates you will be joining, and “Line Drawing” in the subject line.

Calming Mandalas
Wednesdays, February 3, 10, 17, 24, 10:00 – 11:30 am
This February, disconnect from any uncertainties and chaos and fall into a creative flow state that is both meditative and healing by creating geometric and colorful mandalas. Attendance throughout this four-class series is encouraged but not mandatory.

To register and receive the link to join this virtual series, email info@livingwellcrc.org and include your first and last name, dates you will be joining, and “Mandala” in the subject line.

NeuroGraphic Art
Wednesdays, March 3, 10, 17, 24, 10:00 – 11:30 am
Come join us during the month of March to learn about NeuroGraphic art. This freeform intuitive drawing practice helps release stress, fear and anxiety while creating one-of-a-kind pieces of art. Attendance throughout this four-class series is encouraged but not mandatory.

To register and receive the link to join this virtual series, email info@livingwellcrc.org and include your first and last name, dates you will be joining, and “Intuitive Drawing” in the subject line.

Vision Boards
Wednesdays, April 7, 14, 21, 28, 10:00 – 11:30 am
Learn how to create a variety of different vision/dream boards that will inspire you about life. You will create affirmations and intentions designed to help envision your future. Attendance throughout this four-class series is encouraged but not mandatory.

To register and receive the link to join this virtual series, email info@livingwellcrc.org and include your first and last name, dates you will be joining, and “Vision Board” in the subject line.

Nutrition Classes

LivingWell offers two different series of virtual culinary classes to help patients with cancer and their caregivers move through cancer treatment into survivorship. After the completion of both eight-week series, participants “graduate” and can take the tools learned to make informed decisions about food and meal prep and continue healthy eating habits.

Upon graduation, graduates are invited to take cooking classes at the Community Kitchen located within Northwestern Medicine Delnor Hospital. Two Community Kitchen classes are designed specifically for LivingWell nutrition series graduates (see classes under “Being Well: Transitioning to Survivorship.”) 

“Hot Topics!” classes are not part of a series. They are open to anyone diagnosed with cancer and their caregivers.

Eating Well While Undergoing Cancer Treatment
Presented by Northwestern Medicine/LivingWell dietitian, Nancy Zawicki, RD, LDN, MS
Designed for patients in active treatment and their caregivers, Eating Well classes focus on symptom management during cancer treatment and incorporating plant-based foods into the diet. All classes are on the first and third Tuesdays of each month from 10:00 – 11:00 am.

  • January 19: What to Eat Before and During Chemo
  • February 2: Protecting the Immune System
  • February 16: Sidelining Side Effects, Part I. Taste changes, sore mouth, painful swallowing, nausea and vomiting will be discussed with tips and recipes to help minimize or prevent unpredictable side effects during treatment.
  • March 2: Sidelining Side Effects, Part II: This class will include tips for handling gastrointestinal digestion distress by learning to manage fiber in your diet.
  • March 16: Now It’s My Turn to Cook
  • April 6: Reducing Inflammation with Anti-Inflammatory Foods
  • April 20: How to Make the Most of Each Bite When Eating Becomes Challenging
  • May 4: Celebrate Completion of Series with Healthy Recipes

To register and receive the link to join this eight-session series, email info@livingwellcrc.org  and include your first and last name and “Eating Well” in your subject line. Attendance throughout the entire series is highly encouraged but not mandatory.

Being Well: Transitioning to Survivorship
Presented by Northwestern Medicine/LivingWell dietitian, Nancy Zawicki, RD, LDN, MS
Designed for cancer survivors and their caregivers, this series of classes focuses on healthy recipes and wellness topics to help improve mind, body and spirit while adjusting to life post treatment. All classes are on the second and fourth Tuesdays of each month from 10:00 – 11:00 am.

  • February 9: Moving Forward After A Cancer Diagnosis
  • February 23: Managing a Healthy Weight after Treatment  
  • March 9: Mediterranean Style of Eating
  • March 23: Gut Health
  • April 13: Cooking for One or Two (this class will be hosted by the Delnor Community Kitchen )
  • April 27: Culinary Completion (this class will be hosted by the Delnor Community Kitchen)

To register and receive the link to join this six-session series, email info@livingwellcrc.org  and include your first and last name and “Being Well” in your subject line. Attendance throughout the entire series is highly encouraged but not mandatory.  

Hot Topics!
Nutrition Apps and Diet Plans: What’s a Fad and What’s the Future?
Presented by Northwestern Medicine/LivingWell dietitian, Mary Zupke, RD, LDN, MS, FAND
Wednesday, February 3, 1:00 – 2:00 pm
Join this special presentation to help you make informed choices about nutrition and learn about tools that can help provide accountability and structure around your diet.
To register and receive the link to join this class, email info@livingwellcrc.org  and include your first and last name and “Nutrition Apps” in your subject line.

Special Programs

Documentary “Hidden Scars: Emotional Impact of Mastectomy and Cancer-Related Experiences”
Thursday, April 8, 6:00 – 7:30 pm
Join directors and cancer survivors, Kathleen “Casey” Clabby and Noel Storm, to view their documentary that explores the impact of mastectomy and how it affects emotions before and after surgery. There will be time for questions and conversation after the film. People affected by any type of cancer are welcome.
To register and receive a link to join this virtual presentation, e-mail info@livingwellcrc.org and include your first and last name and “Hidden Scars” in your subject line.

Navigating Work and Cancer
Thursday, April 15, 1:00 pm
A cancer diagnosis often brings up questions on how to navigate work and cancer. Regardless of if you are working through treatment or returning to work after taking time off, you may have access to federal, state, and employer protections. This presentation by cancer rights attorney and CEO, Triage Cancer, Joanna Fawzy Morales, will address the relevant laws such as the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), state laws, and disclosure and privacy protections.
To register and receive a link to join this virtual presentation, e-mail info@livingwellcrc.org and include your first and last name and “Navigating Work” in your subject line.

Social Security Disability Benefits and Cancer
Thursday, May 13, 1:00 pm
Kristin Hartsaw, program director, DuPage Federation of Human Services Reform, will be leading this presentation that reviews benefits available through the Social Security Administration, qualifications for these benefits and things to consider before applying. Kristin has a wealth of knowledge on this important topic, so please bring your questions!
To register and receive a link to join this virtual presentation, e-mail info@livingwellcrc.org and include your first and last name and “Social Security” in your subject line.

Support Groups

Several LivingWell support groups are now online. To receive a link to join one, e-mail counseling@livingwellcrc.org.

Caregiver Support
Every other Tuesday, 6:30 – 7:30 pm. (January 19; February 2, 16; March 2, 16, 30; April 13, 27)
This support group embraces the importance of those dedicated to caring for loved ones who are living with cancer and provides opportunities to network with other caregivers facing similar challenges.

Facing Cancer Together (FACT)
Every other Tuesday, 6:30 – 7:30 pm. (January 19; February 2, 16; March 2, 16, 30; April 13, 27)
FACT is an ongoing weekly support group for people with any type or stage of cancer, and is appropriate for patients who are newly diagnosed, in treatment, completing treatment, or living with cancer as a chronic illness.

Good Grief
First and third Thursdays of each month, 6:30 – 8:00 pm 
Navigating life after loss is challenging, but having the support of others who understand can help. This group provides emotional support and connection for individuals who have experienced the loss of an adult loved one to cancer within the past 12 months.

Grief Transitions
Second Monday of each month, 6:30 – 7:30 pm 
This group provides support to those individuals who lost an adult loved one and are navigating life with grief after the one year mark of their loss and up to three years beyond.

Breast (General)
Third Monday of each month, 6:30 – 7:30 pm
This group provides those with breast cancer to come together and support one another through diagnosis, treatment, and early survivorship.

Breast (Mastectomy)
Fourth Wednesday of each month, 6:30 – 7:30 pm 
Open to any individual who has had or will be having a mastectomy to process the physical and emotional impact a diagnosis can have on those with a breast cancer diagnosis. Facilitated by a survivor and longtime LivingWell/Northwestern Medicine volunteer.

Breast (Metastatic)
Third Monday of each month, 3:00 – 4:00 pm
This group offers support and connection with others who understand the challenges of living with a metastatic breast cancer diagnosis.

Leukemia, Lymphoma, Multiple Myeloma
Fourth Monday of each month, 6:30 – 7:30 pm
This group supports any individual living with a leukemia, lymphoma, or multiple myeloma diagnosis—as well as those caring for a loved one with one of those diagnoses.

Brain Tumor
Second Wednesday of each month, 6:00 – 7:00 pm 
This group is co-facilitated by LivingWell social work and neuro-oncology APN to provide support and education to patients who have a diagnosis of a primary brain tumor. Caregivers are welcome to attend.

Head and Neck
Monday, January 11, 6:00 – 7:00 pm
Open to anyone diagnosed with a head and neck cancer, this group  provides an opportunity for participants to share personal experiences, coping strategies and receive education and information about treatment and post treatment changes.

Us TOO Prostate
Third Tuesday of each month, 10:30 – 11:30 am
Join the Meeting (join by phone at 312.535.8110 access code: 177 958 0656)

Fourth Tuesday of each month, 7:00 – 8:00 pm
Join the meeting (join by phone at 312.535.8110 access code: 177 011 1280)
Provides educational resources and support to those impacted by prostate cancer at two different dates and times per month.

Virtual Wig Consultations

For patients experiencing hair loss as a result of cancer treatments, LivingWell now offers virtual wig consultations. Our wig specialists will help you choose a wig that fits your needs, lifestyle and budget from the privacy of your home. To schedule a virtual wig consultation, click here.

Recorded Culinary Classes

Watch cooking classes filmed in the LivingWell kitchen with Northwestern Medicine/LivingWell dietitians on our YouTube Channel.

Recorded Art Projects and Relaxation Practices

Get creative and take care of yourself at home with art and wellness projects designed by LivingWell art and wellness instructors.