May cancer program offerings at Dempsey Center include healing arts, cooking

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LEWISTON — The Dempsey Center has announced free May program offerings. These free programs are intended for cancer patients, their families and caregivers.

All programs are held at the Dempsey Center, 29 Lowell St. on the fifth floor, unless otherwise noted. For more information, call 207-795-8250 or email info@dempseycenter.org.

One-time or series programs

Cooking Matters Pop-Up Store Tour: 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, May 2. The cooking enhanced nutrition education class offers participants cost-saving techniques for the grocery store, tools for choosing nutritious options from every food group and ideas for healthy low-cost meals. Participants will have the opportunity to engage in a facilitated discussion, as well as a hands-on culinary experience to prepare a dish to share in class. First-time participants will receive a $10 gift card for healthy purchases, reference material and other take-home gifts. Led by Rebecca Schoen, BA, Maine SNAP-Ed nutrition educator, Healthy Androscoggin.

Nutrition for Life — The Anti-Cancer Diet: 2:30 to 4 p.m. Tuesday, May 3, and Thursday, May 10. The four-part nutrition series explores the nuts and bolts of the anti-cancer diet. Each class will include cooking demonstrations and tasting opportunities.

Putting the Pieces Together: 5:30 to 7 p.m. Tuesday, May 8. The act of tearing up images associated with difficult experiences or emotions and using them to create an entirely new work of art can be a powerful exercise. The workshop will give clients the opportunity to tell their cancer story through the medium of mosaic collage. All supplies will be provided, but participants are also encouraged to bring materials that may have personal significance to incorporate into their piece. Appropriate for all ages.

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Mini-Spa: 6 to 7 p.m. Wednesday, May 9, and 10 to 11 a.m. Friday, May 25. Evening of free mini-spa treatments.

Chemo Brain Fog — What to Do about It: 6 to 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, May 9. Learn strategies to help in day-to-day activities. Presented by Tom Miller, PhD, clinical director and neuropsychologist, Goodwill NNE

Young Adult Spring Escape — Mini-Golf: 2:30 to 5:30 p.m. Saturday, May 12. Meet at Roy’s All Steak Hamburgers and Golf Center for a game of mini-golf followed by dinner. The program is open to young adults impacted by cancer, age 18 and older. The Dempsey Center will cover costs related to mini-golf; the rest is up to participants. Limited to 12.

Nutrition after Prostate Cancer: 6 to 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, May 30. The nutritionist will share the latest nutrition guidelines for cancer risk reduction and demonstrate a few recipes to taste test. Appropriate for prostate cancer patients, survivors and caregivers. Limited to 25.

Ongoing programs

The following programs are held on an ongoing basis, some require preregistration and others are open for drop-ins.

Monthly Monday Meditations: 4 to 4:45 p.m. first Monday of each month, drop-in group meditation sessions. Brief instruction, followed by guided exercises designed to give participants a “sampling” of different types of meditation practices, including mindfulness, loving kindness and seasonal practices. No experience is necessary and registration is not required.

Dempsey Center Introductory Meeting and Tour: 3 to 3:45 p.m. Tuesdays and noon to 12:45 p.m. Fridays. Preregistration requested. Other times available, including Saturdays, by appointment. Call 207-795-8250 to register.

Fit for Life: 11 a.m. to noon Mondays, 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. Wednesdays. Under the guidance of a fitness instructor, the class will feature strengthening, balance and flexibility exercise, combined with light to moderate movement. Drop-ins welcome.

Pilates Yoga: 11 a.m. to noon Tuesdays. Merges the benefits of Pilates and Yoga to develop core strength, tone muscles, increase flexibility and help reduce stress. Drop-ins welcome.

Yoga for Life: 11 a.m. to noon and 6 to 7 p.m. Thursdays. This is a gentle yoga class for all fitness levels. The focus is on range of motion movement and gentle stretching. No experience with yoga required. Drop-ins welcome.

YWCA Breast Cancer Encore Program: 6:15 to 6:45 p.m. Thursdays, Lewiston-Auburn YWCA. The program, designed for those who have experienced breast cancer, consists of 30-minutes of warm water, gentle exercises designed to increase range of motion, muscle strength and enhance general fitness. Participants will also have free access to the YWCA pool and lap, family swims or water fitness programs. Appropriate for breast cancer patients and survivors.

Services by appointment

The following services are available by making an appointment at the Dempsey Center, 207-795-8250. Some may require physician approval or medical clearance to participate.

Counseling services: Oncology counselors are available for patients and caregivers/loved ones to help promote coping. Short-term grief counseling is available to those who have lost a loved one to cancer.

Legacy and Life Reflections: Professionally recorded interviews, exploring memories, values and lessons learned to share with others. Available to patients living with advanced or metastatic cancer. Call 207-330-7737 to arrange an appointment.

Wigs and Head Wear Consultations: Trained staff will assist with head wear options based on goals and resource availability. Options include hats (for men and women), scarves, chemo caps and wigs.

Bra Fittings for Mastectomy Patients: Free bra and breast prosthesis fittings. To schedule an appointment, call Chelsea at Transitions at Bedards, 207-784-3700, ext. 1107, or Joan Caron at the Medicine Shoppe, 207-783-3539.

Acupuncture: Appointments available from 1 to 4 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays. Treatment occurs in one large room where people relax in recliners. The clinics are open to anyone who has had a cancer diagnosis within the last two years. Call to register.

Wellness for Life Consultations: A wellness specialist will help establish personal fitness and wellness goals and will be available to provide ongoing support.

Nutrition Consultations: Healthy eating habits and good nutrition can help patients deal with the effects of cancer, before, during and after treatment. A dietitian will tailor a nutrition plan specific to needs.

Massage Therapy: Patients are eligible for eight massage sessions with physician approval. Primary caregivers are eligible for six sessions.

Reiki: A gentle technique intended to reduce stress and discomfort. Practitioners place their hands on, or just above the body. Patients are eligible for eight sessions. Primary caregivers are eligible for six.

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