Smith Center focuses on a single profound idea: everyone harbors the innate ability to heal, even when facing life’s most serious challenges. Specializing in psychosocial support, the center helps those affected by cancer and other illnesses to improve their well-being. Workshops, classes, retreats, and tailored support groups (including Spanish-language and young adult groups) focus on creativity, stress reduction, nutrition, physical activity, and coping strategies – all of which have been shown to improve patients’ prognosis and quality of life. Trained patient navigators provide individual support throughout the cancer experience, from diagnosis through survivorship and end-of-life. Smith Center serves 600 patients and caregivers each year; meanwhile, thousands of people visit its public gallery featuring artwork and events that explore the innate connection between creativity and well-being – because even when a cure is out of reach, healing is always possible.
COVID-19 Impact: Quickly pivoting to move 100% of in-person programming to an online format; Smith Center developed and distributed new community-minded content through its existing channels. Programs in “compassion cultivation training,” healing in the face of infertility, support groups for those who have lost a loved one to cancer, “chair yoga,” and a writing program for young adults to explore inspiration through the written word.
Headquarters: DC-Ward 2
Where They Operate: DC-Citywide; DC-Ward 1; DC-Ward 2; DC-Ward 3; DC-Ward 4; DC-Ward 5; DC-Ward 6; DC-Ward 7; DC-Ward 8; U Street Corridor
Age Groups Served: Young adult (18-24); Adult (25-49); Seniors (50+)
Ethnic Groups Served: African American; Asian American; Caucasian; Latino/Hispanic
Population(s) Served: All
- Number of people served by our Cancer Support Programs anually:
- Number of people who have attended our gallery annually:
- Performances/exhibits/art classes, etc. offered annually:
Awards & Recognition
-Komen for the Cure awards for work with survivorship 1998, 1999
-Washington Cancer Institute Innovations Awards for Survivorship
-2010 Rosemary Williams Community Award from Howard University Cancer Center (HUCC)
-Two-time recipient of the Susan G. Komen Virginia Kelly Award for Excellence in Survivorship
-Recipient of a three-year Susan G. Komen Academic Partnership Grant for a 2009-2011 partnership with Howard University's Center for Urban Progress (CUP)
-Smith Center presented at the Association of Oncology Social Workers' National Conference (AOSW) in 2011
-The American Psychosocial Oncology Society (APOS) Conference and the Oncology Nursing Society Congress in 2012
-The Society for Integrative Oncology (SIO) in 2012 and 2013
-In 2011, Executive Director Shanti Norris received a Distinguished Fellow Award from the Global Alliance for Arts and Health.
- Yoga for cancer patients and their caregivers
Tue Oct 11 2011, Washington Post
"Sometimes it's harder on the caregivers because they feel helpless," says Smith Center Exec Director Shanti Norris. "They feel guilty ..."
- Nutrition & Cancer
Tue Oct 11 2011, NewsTalk with Bruce DePuyt
Alaina Sadick and Meredith Anderson of Smith Center discussed their upcoming workshop on nutrition awareness for persons battling cancer.
- '50/50' Showcases Relationship Between Art And Cancer
Fri Sep 30 2011, Huffington Post
Most of us understand what curing is -- getting rid of the illness, finding a successful treatment," says Shanti Norris ...
- $3 million or higher
- The current budget for Smith Center for Healing and the Arts is: $1 million to $3 million
- $500k to $1 million
- Less than $500k
Catalogue charities range in size from $100,000 to
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