Joining FORCES is the FORCE newsletter with news, views and supportive information for individuals concerned about hereditary breast and ovarian cancer.
by Sue Friedman
The agenda is set, the speakers are booked, and our rooms are almost sold out. These are the makings of another successful conference, and the numbers tell the story: 48 sessions, 55 speakers, 6 after-hours events, and 8 support and networking sessions add up to a weekend filled with sharing, research and relaxation, focus and fun.
We are most appreciative of our generous sponsors and supporters — including our title sponsor, Komen for the Cure — for allowing us to once again bring an unparalleled educational program to our community at a nominal cost. Our collaborative health care partner, Celebration Health, will staff a booth to provide free health and well-being assessments for conference attendees, including evaluation of body mass index, fat distribution, nutrition and micronutrition, physical activity, and overall wellness. Representatives will also offer tips and resources for staying in shape. (Please read the article about our work with Celebration Health to Improve Continuum of Care.)
As always, research is one of our major conference themes. Catch up on the latest results, enroll in a study or registry, gather information to use or share about new clinical trials, and find out about the latest theories that scientists are examining more closely. Thanks to feedback from prior conferences, this year we've added sessions to help attendees understand the basics of research and how to interpret research articles. We have more topics on holistic care, including sessions on integrative medicine, diet and nutrition, and long-term wellness issues. Workshops will provide psychosocial support for decision-making, communicating with family, and coping with body image concerns. Learn about your medical legal rights and tips for appealing insurance denials. Our agenda also includes yoga, cardio tennis, and other activities to keep you active and energized. The entire program is designed to help participants live the best lives they can.
Networking and after-hours events are uplifting, inspiring, and designed to nurture your spirit. Visit Show & Tell where women share their post-mastectomy experiences and outcomes. Show & Tell sponsoring surgeons will answer questions about the procedures they perform.
If you are looking to add spice to your romantic life, attend Girls' Night In, sponsored by Pure Romance. First-time attendees can connect with volunteers and conference veterans for an ice-breaking meet-and-greet party on Thursday night. Later, enjoy desserts prepared by the Hyatt's award-winning chef and a signature cocktail at our elegant welcome reception. Cap off the conference on Saturday night with our wrap-up gene pool and Jacuzzi party.
The Hyatt Regency Grand Cypress offers many activities, including four full Jack Nicklaus-designed golf courses; an executive pitch-and-putt; lighted clay tennis courts; a full gym; walking, running, and biking trails; and free bicycles available for guests. The hotel's private lake offers kayaks, sailboats, and paddleboats. And hotel spa services are also available for extra pampering.
If you will not be attending this year, stay tuned to our website for session summaries and exciting announcements about our next Joining FORCEs conference.