Posted by Cathy K
 
Our trip to Alaska for great experience ...

This year, our club launched a new project “Anti-cancer: support for survivors” on a very important topic not only for our city, but also for the whole Russia.
The idea of ​​the project belongs to Kapitalina Alekseeva, who published this summer her 4th book “The Day Will Come…” In this book she describes her personal experience in dealing with a serious illness making a statement that nobody in Russia rehabilitates patients who survived after oncology. With the idea of our project we wrote a letter to our friends in Alaska, particularly to Past- Governor of District 5010 Ted Trueblood. A big friend of our club, Ted immediately responded to our project and offered possibility of studying great experience in the rehabilitation and support of cancer survivors in Alaska. At the end of August 2018 a group from Yakutsk went for a 1 week trip on “Russian Cancer Survivors Support Program”. Our group consisted of 3 people: myself from Rotary Club of Yakutsk and two, Doctors Alena Nikitina, Director of the Republican Center of Medical Prevention and Belolyubskaya Tuyara, Vice-Chief Doctor of “Yakutsk Republican Oncologic Dispensary".
 
Our program was actually like VTT - because it was designed in such a way that in the shortest period we had a chance to visit and study the activities of Alaskan Cancer medical institutions that treats cancer patients, as well as the organizations that deal with cancer patients in Anchorage: Providence Hospital, Katmai Oncology Group, Alaska Cancer Treatment Center, Oncology / Hematology and Infusion Center. We also visited Providence Hospice, Hospice of Anchorage, Anchorage Pioneer Home, and, of course, very useful was meeting with people from Women listen Cancer Support Group. In addition, we visited the University of Alaska in Anchorage.
All meetings were extremely useful, thanks to the excellent organization of our visit; we very effectively spent our time. The process of rehabilitation people who survived cancer is very important around the world and includes many aspects: psychological help, work of social workers, yoga-therapy, communication with each other, cooking lessons, art therapy, nutrition, prevention of diseases and regular check-ups. Correct rehabilitation allows people to return back to their society in a good shape, helps to continue to live full life, to work, and to reduce the disabilities among patients. At the end of the day our society and the state will only benefit from all this efforts.
Of course, our Rotary friends did everything possible to make our trip informative. We had a wonderful time with Rotarians from the Anchorage International Rotary Club during a picnic at Ted and Gloria Trueblood. Each Rotarian brought a culinary dish, and Ted of course cooked famous Alaskan salmon!

We were also invited to an Anchorage International Rotary Club meeting, where we told about our project, also met with DG Diane Fejes and had opportunity to pass message from Kapitalina Alekseeva. We were very pleased to when DG sent a message expressing support: “Thank you Katya and your team for making the effort to come.  It was a pleasure to meet you and hear your Mom’s story. I wish you well on your future efforts in helping all the cancer survivors in your area.”
 
The week turned out to be very full, very informative, very interesting.  We got “charged” with tremendous energy to launch our project! Already in October, our club plans to organize Health Fair. After that, we plan to start support group meetings for cancer survivors with doctors. Start to the project is given! Thanks to our dearest, long-time Rotary friends from Alaska, and personally to Ted Trueblood for the support and arrangement of our trip to Anchorage.
We looking forward to meet our friends from Alaska in Yakutsk next summer continue our project!

Clark Katerina
Rotary Club of Yakutsk