Canadians Dealing with Cancer Connect Online for Information and Support
10 August 2011
The Canadian Cancer Society has introduced a new online community for people with cancer and their caregivers – CancerConnection.ca/ParlonsCancer.ca. This new online forum is a safe and welcoming place where both English and French speaking Canadians can share ideas and experiences of cancer and build friendships to support each other in their fight against the disease. Members can connect with each other as well as with the Society through blogs, profiles, discussion forums, messages, links and other shared information.
The site is unique in Canada because of its broad scope and focus on all types of cancer.
The online community is intended to expand the reach of the Society’s existing information and support services, such as the Cancer Information Service Peer Support “With our new online community, people with cancer and their caregivers now have another option to help them on their cancer journey,” says Ann Millar, Support Services Coordinator for the Canadian Cancer Society, PEI Division.
A cancer diagnosis, whether your own or a loved one’s, can be shocking and deeply distressing. Dealing with treatments, side effects and a variety of strong emotions can be a frightening and lonely experience. At times, many patients and family members feel overwhelmed, confused, guilty and sad. There are also times of joy to be shared when there are victories.
An online community offers another type of support for those who may be more comfortable using online services than telephone or in-person support. Members of CancerConnection.ca/ParlonsCancer.ca can talk to each other from the comfort of home with anonymity if desired.
According to a recent Ipsos Reid study, Canadians now spend more time on the Internet than watching TV. Overall, Canadians are spending more than 18 hours a week online. Consumers are also increasingly turning to the internet for both health information and support. Canadians dealing with cancer have a significant appetite for using online support services.
Evaluations of the Society’s current information and support services show they have a positive impact and there is a high satisfaction rate. However, the number of people reached is only a small portion of the potential target population. The new online community will provide an additional option for our target audiences to engage with the Society and with others who are on a cancer journey.
The Canadian Cancer Society is a national community-based organization of volunteers whose mission is the eradication of cancer and the enhancement of the quality of life of people living with cancer. When you want to know more about cancer, visit our website www.cancer.ca or call our toll-free, bilingual Cancer Information Service at 1 888 939-3333.