Newtown-based Realtor Dave Marcolla chairs the 20-member board of the Cancer Support Community Greater Philadelphia, an organization serving Bucks County, plus four others. The nonprofit's supporters presently are observing its 30th anniversary year, highlighted by sharing "30 Pearls of Wisdom."
The group's mission is to ensure people impacted by cancer are empowered by knowledge, strengthened by action and sustained by community. "Through CSCGP, we provide heartfelt support, education and hope to help adults and children affected by cancer," Dave says.
Dave is serving his third board term. He's been a volunteer and leader with the group for 10-plus years, previously being board vice-chair and chairing the CSCGP marketing committee, as well as spearheading fundraisers, such as the Gala and Pints in the Park events.
Kelly Harris, CSCGP CEO, says the group's programs and services are provided at no cost to participants, known as members, so there’s never a barrier for anyone who needs cancer support.
30 Pearls of CSCGP Wisdom:
- A great way to help a friend in treatment is to prepare freezable, nutritious snacks.
- Worry, fear and anxiety are normal human emotions.
- Have a pity party, just don't unpack your bag there.
- Thank you, Chemo; I hate you! Love? Claire
- There is no right or wrong way to grieve.
- Cancer impacts the entire family system.
- Have a plan for every situation, along with plan B and C.
- There are often ways to combat side effects with dietary changes. Ask to meet the oncology dietitian.
- Your whole life changes and although you may have sympathy, you may feel sorrow and feel for the person, you don't understand. Life is hard, but you got to keep on swimming and pushing.
- Forgive yourself. What you're going through is hard.
- Courage doesn't always roar. Sometimes, courage is the quiet voice at the end of the day saying, 'I will try again tomorrow.'
- Cassandra Stidham from Fox Chase Cancer Center introduced us to cancer-fighting foods and the new American plate.
- Taking control of where we can is self-care. Nutrition, exercise, sleep, water, meditation, spirituality, friends, family.
- Finding peers that walk this hard road not only lifts me up but it drives me to push myself like never before while also taking care of my well-being.
- Scanxiety is real!
- Don't listen to everything Dr. Google says.
- No, your doctor won't be offended if you ask for a second opinion.
- Ask questions. Take up time and space if something is unclear.
- Cancer is a word, not a sentence.
- Learn from mistakes of others as you'll never learn long enough to make them all yourself.
- Counseling needs to be part of the treatment plan. The support and encouragement I received was crucial to my healing and ability to cope with the many stresses of cancer.
- Do what's right for you to do for you, and let people know how they can help you.
- Chemo brain is real!
- Science is awesome. Today's cancer is not your grandmother's cancer because today's treatments are not the same as they were yesterday.
- It's OK to be the new kid on the cancer block. Ask questions and make sure you feel heard.
- Some tips for a better night's sleep include developing a strong bedtime routine that might include meditation, reading, essential oils, eliminating light, gentle exercising or stretching.
- Your body and your cancer are unique, so expect your journey to be unique.
- Knowing and acknowledging the changes cancer has on everyone in the family will help everyone deal with it better.
- It's normal to feel anxious after ringing the bell.
- Find a community of support to rely on throughout your cancer journey. Cancer Support Community Greater Philadelphia has been that for 400,00-plus people in a five-county area for 30 years.
To get involved with CSCGP locally, call Dave at 267.291.0400.