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ACS Out and About events seek to engage cancer survivors

SOUTH BEND, Ind. -- 

The American Cancer Society has offices across the nation, but the St. Joseph County office has designed a unique program in an effort to bring cancer survivors together.  

“We really just wanted to give back to them. Just do fun things in the community for cancer survivors,” said Josh Kellems, health systems manager for American Cancer Society of St. Joseph County. 

Kellems was involved in creating the group called ACS Out and About.  Committee members plan events throughout the year for cancer survivors at little to no cost.

Kellems says it’s a good way to engage local cancer survivors in fun activities without creating a heavy environment.

“We’re not talking about cancer, not talking about cancer survivorship. We’re really just asking them to come out and bring a friend, bring a caregiver or a loved one and just have a good time,” he said.

All of the events are either free or low-cost.

With the group now in its second year, Kellems says they hope to expand the program.

“We’re trying to grow our network. We’re trying to expand using our Facebook page,” he said. “That’s what the committee is all about. It’s using their circles of influence. A lot of our committee members are cancer survivors so they can reach out to their friends, their loved ones and their support system.”

Kellems says the group also hopes to work with local hospitals and cancer treatment centers in the future.

Upcoming events and more information can be found on their Facebook page.

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