A GIST Diagnosis Can Be Stressful and Confusing
The mission of The Life Raft Group’s GIST Mentor Program is to support people with GIST and their loved ones as they navigate through diagnosis, treatment, and recovery. The program exists to help patients and their caregivers advocate for themselves and provide emotional support as they continue their journey with GIST. An LRG GIST Mentor is a survivor or caregiver who can offer you understanding and empathy. GIST Mentors reassure patients and their caregivers that they are not alone in their GIST journey. This program is available to patients, caregivers, family members or a close friend of a GIST patient for support during this difficult period.
A GIST Mentor support has four core functions:
- Assistance in daily management
Mentors use their own experiences with diet, physical activity and medicine adherence in helping people figure out how to manage GIST in their daily lives. They can also help in identifying key resources, such as where to buy healthy foods or pleasant and convenient locations for exercise.
- Social and emotional support
Through empathetic listening and encouragement, mentors are an integral part of helping patients to cope with social or emotional barriers and to stay motivated to reach their goals.
- Linkages to clinical care and community resources
Mentors can help bridge the gap between patients and health professionals and encourage individuals to seek out clinical and LRG resources when it is appropriate.
- Ongoing support and extended over time
Mentors successfully keep patients engaged by providing proactive, flexible, and continual long-term follow-up.
An LRG GIST Mentor will be assigned to you when we receive your request. The service is free, and not intended to replace medical advice or recommendations. Any information shared between a GIST Mentor and mentee concerning treatments, medications, or therapies should be discussed with a physician.
Do You Have Personal Experience with GIST as a Patient or Caregiver?
You can become an LRG GIST Mentor and provide support, empathy, and understanding to people with GIST or their caregivers, family members or a close friend. The LRG exists to reassure GIST patients and their caregivers that they are not alone on their GIST journey. Our goal of supporting the community does not stop if patients lose their battle with this disease. The LRG is also seeking volunteers who have lost a loved one to GIST and are willing to offer support to others.
Here’s How It Works
If you would like to become an LRG GIST Mentor, please provide us your contact information by clicking the Become a GIST Mentor button below. We will respond to your request by emailing you a profile questionnaire regarding your experience and interests. We will strive to connect patients with a GIST Mentor who shares similar experiences. All information is kept confidential. Once you return the questionnaire, we will email you to arrange for a personal telephone call or video conference to welcome you and discuss the role and responsibilities as a volunteer GIST Mentor. You will also be invited to participate in an orientation/training with an experienced GIST Mentor. Click the button below to fill out a Volunteer Application.