The Wellness Community (TWC) and Gilda’s Clubs Worldwide were both leaders in the field of psychological, emotional, and social support for cancer patients and their loved ones in different regions of the country. By consolidating the two networks of approximately 25 affiliates each, Gilda’s Club and TWC aimed to increase operating efficiency, reduce costs, and deliver program services at a staffing level and budget not significantly higher than either one of the two independent organizations. In addition, the boards hoped that the merged organization would have greater resources and influence to strengthen affiliate training, research, policy, and advocacy functions, and to spearhead advances in the field of cancer care. Merging in 2010, the two organizations took the name Cancer Support Community (CSC) and became the largest independent network of cancer support providers in the U.S. Since the merger, CSC has achieved significant programmatic and operational efficiencies, saving millions of dollars. Cost savings have made it possible for CSC to enhance both programming and infrastructure, especially with respect to the integration and expansion of its online presence. The merger has catapulted CSC into the top ten cancer service providers in the country by both size of budget and number of patients served, enabling CSC not only to expand its policy and advocacy activities but also, most importantly, to exponentially increase its impact in the cancer care field. The SeaChange-Lodestar Fund provided a grant to facilitate the merger.
Grant Amount: $100,000
Year Granted: 2010
Timeframe: Grant awarded over multiple years
Grantee: Cancer Support Community (CSC)
Grantee Website: Cancer Support Community (CSC)