Suzanne MitchellVolunteer work: Ms. Mitchell is the...

VOLUNTEER SPOTLIGHT

April 17, 1994|By Kevin Harrison

Suzanne Mitchell

Volunteer work: Ms. Mitchell is the founder of Sharing and Coping, a support group for cancer patients and their families, sponsored by the American Cancer Society. She also volunteers as president of the board of directors and sits on the executive committee for the Cancer Resource and Support Center (CaRES) in Pasadena.

About the volunteer: A resident of Kent Island, Ms. Mitchell has been a practicing psychologist for 19 years. She received a bachelor of arts degree from James Madison University and a master's degree from Loyola College.

In the mid 1980s, she became concerned that the county lacked a support group for cancer patients.

She met CaRES founder Katherine Smith, who asked her to help develop and begin a support group. As Ms. Mitchell says, "You get these signals from time to time, from God."

Volunteer's comments: "I first got involved when I was in private practice, dealing with patients with life-threatening illnesses.

"The original way I saw Sharing and Coping was as a self-help group with a consultant. I think I can have some input for these patients. Patients need support more than just once a month.

"What actually counts is the care delivered to the patients. That's the most important thing.

"Working with cancer patients, you see the rewards right away.

"There's a volunteer spot for anyone. You don't have to have any particular expertise.

"It's very rewarding."

Organization's comments: Beth Spencer, a service and rehabilitation representative for the American Cancer Society, says Ms. Mitchell "has encouraged each participant to share mutual problems and concerns in such a positive manner. Her dedication goes unmatched."

About the program: Sharing and Coping will celebrate its seventh anniversary on Thursday. The group is one of the area's longest-running support groups for cancer patients and their families, according to Ms. Spencer.

The group meets at 7 p.m. every Thursday at the CaRES office in Pasadena, 8055 Ritchie Highway in Patriots Plaza.

For more information, call 721-4304.

"Volunteer Spotlight" is compiled by Kevin Harrison. To recommend someone, call the Anne Arundel Bureau, 315-8911, any time or fax information to 315-8916 or mail them to: The Sun for Anne Arundel, 8131 Ritchie Highway, Pasadena 21122.

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