Ovarian Cancer Research Fund Alliance: Woman to Woman Program
The Woman to Woman grant opportunity is available to start a Woman to Woman peer support program. Each Woman to Woman program is overseen by a part-time Program Coordinator who has a strong relationship with patients and a solid knowledge of local resources. It is recommended that the Program Coordinator plan to dedicate 20 hours per week to program start-up for at least the first six months. The Program Coordinator is responsible for managing all aspects of the program, from mentor recruitment, training and supervision, to managing incoming patient referrals, as well as fiscal and administrative oversight. The Program Coordinator matches the mentors with demographically appropriate women undergoing treatment, and serves as a liaison between mentor and patient. Patients will be referred to Woman to Woman by staff of the partner hospital(s). After the referral, the Program Coordinator interviews all women being treated and determines interest in and appropriateness of the program. The Program Coordinator trains all volunteers before they are matched with patients, and provides on-going education and support through monthly group meetings. Mentors meet women immediately following diagnosis and provide emotional support and peer mentoring throughout the treatment process providing support by telephone, email, or one-on-one in the treatment centers. Another key component of Woman to Woman is a patient fund, which provides modest financial assistance to women undergoing treatment and their families. This fund, which is overseen by the Program Coordinator, can provide temporary assistance with household bills, childcare, transportation, copayments, and other expenses.
The grant is intended to help provide salary support for the Program Coordinator, to cover miscellaneous program expenses, and to start a patient fund. It is expected that each Woman to Woman program will become self-funding and sustaining after the grant period has ended.
- Hospital-based programs: Grants range up to $60,000 for a one year grant period
- Community-based organizations: Grants range up to $30,000 for a period that ranges up to two years
- Hospitals or cancer centers. Competitive applicants will demonstrate the following: adequate gynecologic oncology patient volume, physician and hospital leadership support, the need for the program, the ability to run patient-focused initiatives, and the ability to fundraise to support programs. Programs must have the support of a physician champion in the gynecologic oncology department, who will assist in referring appropriate patients to the program, as well as ensure support from departmental and hospital leadership. It is strongly recommended that the coordinator of the program be an existing staff member with a master’s level degree with a background in clinical social work and that the candidate be identified on the grant application.
- Community-based organizations. Competitive applicants will demonstrate the following: the need for the program in the community or geographic area served, a history of running successful patient-focused initiatives, and an active working relationship with the proposed hospital partners. Community-based organizations must have hospital partners that collectively have substantial gynecologic oncology patient volume, demonstrated support from hospital leadership, and a need for the program. Each Woman to Woman program must have the written support of a physician champion and social worker in each of the affiliate hospitals, who will assist in referring appropriate patients to the program.
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