Support Groups and Classes

A good source of support can make a tremendous difference when you or someone you care about is going through or recovering from cancer treatment. You may find comfort in talking with others who are having a similar experience or sharing helpful resources and information with others.

Support groups: Prostate cancer and young adult support groups.
Patient education: Introduction to chemotherapy and pre-transplant education classes.
Patient advocacy: Increase prostate cancer research and treatment awareness throughout Oregon.
Support classes: Yoga and mindfulness classes for stress relief.

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Support Groups

The following support groups are facilitated by professional social workers. You and your family can join at any time.

Prostate cancer support groupProstate Cancer Support Group

For men affected with prostate cancer and their loved ones

Date: 1st Tuesday of the month
Time: 5 - 6:30 p.m.
Location: OHSU Center for Health & Healing, 3rd floor, Paul Kirk Conference Center
Fee: Free
Participants: Men affected by prostate cancer and their loved ones are welcome to attend

Peter Bennett, L.C.S.W. Oncology Social Worker
Rachel Slottke, Clinical Research Project Coordinator, Prostate Cancer Research
Justina Lynch, Nurse Coordinator, Multidisciplinary Prostate Cancer Clinic

The group meetings begin with brief introductions and announcements. When a speaker comes to the group, they will speak for approximately 45 minutes, saving time for questions. The last 30 minutes are reserved for informal check-in and discussion by attendees. Following the group meeting, attendees are welcome to use the comfortable furniture and visit informally in the first floor lobby of the OHSU Center for Health & Healing.

For more information please contact Peter Bennett at 503 418-3544 or at

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Patient Education

Patient education Before undergoing some cancer treatments, it may help to attend a class that tells you what to expect during treatment. The following two classes are held on a regular basis. Advanced registration is required. Please use the contact information listed below.

Infusing Knowledge: A class to introduce patients and families to chemotherapy and immunotherapy

This class is designed to help you and your family members understand what to expect during chemotherapy or immunotherapy treatments. Includes an overview of our dietician services and tips.

Date and Time: 2nd and 4th Thursdays, 9:30 - 11a.m.
Location: OHSU Center for Health & Healing, 7th floor, Room 7050
Contact: Your nurse.

Pre-transplant Education Class

For autologous and allogeneic stem cell transplant patients and their families

Location: Multnomah Pavilion, Center for Hematologic Malignancies
Contact: Your nurse coordinator at 503 494-5058.

Patient Advocacy

Patient advocacyProstate Cancer Patient Advocacy Group

This patient group works to increase prostate  cancer research and treatment awareness across Oregon through fundraising,  legislative and educational initiatives. To get involved call 503 494-4393

Prostate Cancer Friend-to-Friend Program

This telephone program connects prostate cancer patients who may have had similar experiences with  patients who volunteer their time to listen and support you.
To be connected with a volunteer call 503 494-4393

Cancer Support Classes

Cancer support classes

Mindfulness Breath by Breath

For men and women healing from cancer and/or their caregivers

Dates: 1st and 3rd Thursdays of the Month
Time: 9:30 - 10:30  a.m.
Location: Kohler Pavilion, 13th floor
Fee: Free
Contact: Kimberly Carson at 503 245-9642 or
Facilitator: Kimberly Carson, MPH, C-IAYT, E-RYT

Mindfulness-based Stress Reduction

For men and women healing from cancer and their caregivers

Date and time: Eight-week sessions begin in January, late March and September
Location: Women's Wellness Center Classroom, Building 2, Lower Level, Legacy Good Samaritan Medical Center, 1015 NW 22nd Ave, Portland, OR 97210
Fee: $150 (Thanks to a generous donation, the cost of this class has been reduced from $400).
Contact: Kimberly Carson at 503 245-9642 or
Facilitator: Kimberly Carson, MPH, C-IAYT, E-RYT

This course is based on the national model developed by Jon Kabat-Zinn, Ph.D., at the UMass Medical Center. Decades of published research shows that cancer patients who complete the course report reductions in pain, fatigue, anxiety and sleep disturbance and an overall increase in quality of life. Classes include meditation instruction and practice, group discussions and educational presentations on the relationships between mindfulness, stress, and wellness. Classes may include very gentle yoga postures. Participants are

Gentle yoga for healing from cancerGentle Yoga for Healing from Cancer

For women and men healing from cancer (at least 6 weeks post surgery)

Dates: Thursdays
Times: 5:30 – 6:45 p.m.
Location: OHSU School of Nursing,1st floor, room 134 yoga studio
: FREE. Participants pay a nominal fee after their  first year.
Contact: Kimberly Carson, MPH, C-IAYT, E-RYT at 503 245-9642 or at
Michelle Hebert DC, MPH, E-RYT 

Come join others in a  supportive environment designed to nourish your healing. We will engage in  gentle stretching, strength building, breathing exercises, deep relaxation with  guided imagery, and some aspects of meditation. Taught by nationally credentialed yoga teachers.

Women and men in any stage of healing from  cancer (at least 6 weeks post-surgery) are welcome. A signed release from your  primary cancer care provider is required.

Women and men in any stage of healing from  cancer (at least 6 weeks post-surgery) are welcome. A signed release from your  primary cancer care provider is required.

Yoga Release  and Yoga Registration forms available here. Please have these completed by your oncologist and bring them to your first class.

Writing Groups for Healing from CancerWriting Groups for Healing from Cancer

Men's Writing Group

Date: Fridays
Times: 2:00 – 4:00 p.m.
Location: Varies between the OHSU Marquam Hill Campus and Collaborative Life Sciences Building on South Waterfront.
Fee: Free, but registration required
Contact: Ryan Voelker at
Facilitator: Ryan Voelker

Women's Writing Group 

Date: Tuesdays
Times: 10:00 – 12:30 p.m.
Location: Kohler Pavilion, OHSU Center for Women's Health, 7th floor, Wilcox Conference
Fee: Free
Contact: Dawn Thompson at
Facilitator: Dawn Thompson

Young Adult Writing Group (ages 15-39)

Date: Wednesday
Times: 6:30 –  8:30 p.m.
Location: Room 14000D Kohler Pavilion, 3181 SW Sam Jackson Park Rd, Portland, OR 97239
Fee: Free
Contact: Brianna Barrett at
Facilitator: Brianna Barrett

The OHSU Knight Cancer Institute offers you an opportunity to creatively explore your cancer journey and to connect more deeply with yourself through the written word. Following the Amherst Writers & Artists method, this workshop offers a safe, empowering, uplifting environment that encourages health and healing. This circle is a unique opportunity to make  authentic connection with others through the age old practice of sharing our stories. This is not  a support group or a workshop where you will learn to write. This is a relaxed and confidential setting where you can process your cancer experiences through creative writing prompts, exploring the meaning of your story as you put words to your unspoken thoughts. No prior writing experience is necessary.