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Scarsdale Woman Connects Patients With Programs

SCARSDALE, N.Y.- Sheryl Braun started working with the American Cancer Society three years ago because she wanted to become more active in her community. She signed up to become a temporary recruiter for Making Strides Against Breast Cancer , an annual event in Westchester, and formed a team called the Scarsdale Striders.

Braun is now a full-time patient navigator, guiding caregivers and patients from New York and New Jersey every day toward the cancer society's helpful services. She works in the patient service center, which fields calls from the American Cancer Society's direct hotline.

For those looking to talk with someone familiar with the battle they’re going through, Braun suggests the one-on-one support group, Reach to Recovery . And for women self-conscious about their cancer-related appearances, Braun recommends a session with the program, Look Good … Feel Better. Volunteer cosmetologists teach women how to cope with skin changes and hair loss. Braun also understands some may have a tough time getting to treatment or paying for it. The Road to Recovery provides transportation to and from doctor visits and chemotherapy.

“We’re a line of support – people are alarmed and often devastated by their diagnosis,” she said.

It’s especially important, Braun said, that she guide patients properly because the American Cancer Society may be the first phone number called after receiving a diagnosis.

Her job is “a wonderful way to reach people going through a difficult journey in their lives,” she said. The Scarsdale resident also has a personal connection with the organization’s mission. Her grandmother passed away from the disease, her mother is a survivor of breast cancer and other family members have been touched by it. “I saw a great way to get involved by helping others and giving back,” added Braun.

She now serves on the committee for the American Cancer Society's Evening of Hope event to be held at Nov. 18 at Briarcliff Manor's Trump National Golf Club.

Want to follow Sheryl Braun's lead? The 2011 Making Strides of Westchester will be held Oct. 16 at Manhattanville College.

Those in need should contact American Cancer Society's hotline directly at 1-800-227-2345.

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