Lance Armstrong Foundation:CARE program

Austin, TX; Aug 13-15, 2004

I attended this conference to receive relevant training for the sustainability and expansion of the CARE (Cancer Awareness, Resources and Education), Psycho-Educational Theatre Project* as well as for the CARE program in general.

General Session: Infrastructure Development: Marion Lee of Greenlights for Nonprofit Success

Ms. Lee discussed the importance of developing and regularly updating your bylaws, strategic plan, development plan, marketing plan, and contingency plan.

While much of her discussion focused on managing autonomous nonprofit organizations (unlike CARE, which is under the auspices of the SFGH Foundation) much of the information was useful and certainly modifiable to the structure of our program. (Ms. Walcer is the Director of CARE for San Francisco General Hospital).

As a dependent program, we have a Board of Advisors rather than a Board of Directors.

A BOD could strengthen the CARE program by systematizing the afore mentioned Board responsibilities as well as providing an additional fundraising mechanism.

Our limited staff compromises CARE's ability to be as meticulous as we should be in planning and development. Still, it remains crucial to our growth and sustainability to better incorporate development, marketing, and contingency plans to define our long range goals, raise awareness of the program, and have a plan in place in case I can't be there in the future.

As we have already learned from our experience with the SF Foundation funds, we also need to diversify in terms of where we look for funding.

Breakout Session: Survivorship Education

This session provided an opportunity to network with Michael Magnaye & Joyce Young of Asian and Pacific Islander National Cancer Survivors Network (very important contact as we expand CARE to Chinese patients) and Randye Retkin of the New York Legal Assistance Group.

Randye gave me a SF contact with the Volunteer Lawyers of the SF Bar Assoc. We are interested in devoting a CARE session to legal issues.

Randye also shared that Medical/Legal collaborations get hospitals money by helping undocumented pts get MediCal, etc.

General Session: Practical Evaluation Training for Public Health

Practitioners: John Librett, PhD, MPH of the CDC

In addition to reviewing and reaffirming many best practice principles of evaluation, Dr. Librett also shared that 10% of a program's budget should be devoted to evaluation. He also suggested that participants, speakers and BOA members should be queried as to what they consider important areas to be evaluated.

Dr. Librett mentioned that a 20% drop out rate is considered very good (so we're doing great in that respect!) After the session, Flavia requested that the speaker assist with evaluation of the CARE Psycho-Educational Theatre Project - and he agreed!

So, all in all, the Lance Armstrong Foundation Conference was a valuable experience in terms of content, networking opportunities, and celebrating Lance Armstrong's victory with Austin.

*The CARE program received a grant from Lance Armstrong for a psycho-educational theater project.

Blue Walcer, MPH San Francisco General Hospital Hematology/Oncology Division 995 Potrero Avenue Building 80, Ward 84 San Francisco, CA 94110 phone: (415) 476-4082 x409 fax: (415) 476-9233

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