One-to-One Support - Visitors Program

A diagnosis of cancer is often difficult  to cope with. Most people find they have many questions upon being diagnosed, and further questions can arise during and after treatment.

Although the treatment team can address many of the patient's medical questions, there may be other questions they can't answer. Some questions are best answered by someone who has been diagnosed with and treated for cancer.

The Cancer Center of Santa Barbara has created a visitors program composed of volunteers who have had cancer and who want to share their experiences with those who are newly diagnosed. These visitors help patients through a cancer diagnosis and treatment by listening to patients’ concerns, sharing their own experiences, and providing emotional and practical support.

How does the program work?

The Cancer Center maintains a list of visitors who wish to help newly diagnosed people. Staff members try to introduce a patient to a visitor who has had, and undergone treatment for, the same type of cancer. The visitor will call the patient at home, in the hospital room, or at the Cancer Center.

The patient can talk to or meet the visitor just once or throughout their treatment. If you are interested in participating in the visitors program, please complete an application and return it by mail, email or fax.  For more information, please call the Support Services department.

(805) 682-7300
(877) 755-7300 toll free
(805) 569-7715 fax

Diagnosis Specific Peer Support Programs Outside of the Cancer Center:

• ALCASE Lung Cancer Phone Buddy Program - (800) 298-2438

• The Breast Cancer Resource Center of Santa Barbara - (805) 569-9693
   This program offers a peer support network for women with breast cancer.

• Colon Cancer Alliance Buddy Program - (877) 422-2030

• National Cervical Cancer Coalition Peer Support - (800) -800-685-5531

• FORCE: Facing our Risk of Cancer Empowered – (866) 824-7475
   FORCE is a peer-support helpline for people concerned about hereditary breast
   and ovarian cancer.

• The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society First Connection Program - (800) 955-4572

• Pancreatic Cancer- Pan Can PALS Patient & Liaison Services – (877) 272-6226

• Sarcoma Alliance Network – (415) 381-7236