weSPARK Cancer Support Center

Navigating Health Through Wellness

aka weSPARK Cancer Support Center   |   Sherman Oaks, CA   |  www.wespark.org

Mission

weSPARK Cancer Support Center enhances the quality of life for cancer patients, survivors and their loved ones. weSPARK provides free programs and services, which alleviate the physical and emotional side effects of a cancer diagnosis.

Ruling year info

2000

Executive Director

Nancy Allen

Main address

14724 Ventura Blvd., Suite 101

Sherman Oaks, CA 91403 USA

Show more contact info

EIN

95-4785462

NTEE code info

Cancer (G30)

Counseling Support Groups (F60)

Counseling Support Groups (F60)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

Sign in or create an account to view Form(s) 990 for 2020, 2019 and 2018.
Register now

Communication

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

weSPARK Cancer Support Center provides free programs and services, which alleviate the physical and emotional side effects of a cancer diagnosis. These programs help reduce anxiety, fear, depression, and isolation while promoting quality of life and peace of mind. weSPARK provides a safety net for many who have no other system of support or who cannot afford supportive services as they undergo treatment and manage the effects of cancer. weSPARK programming also addresses the grieving process that a cancer diagnosis brings about and broaches difficult topics related to end-of-life care and navigating healthcare options.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Navigating Health Through Wellness (R)

Navigating Health Through Wellness (R) is WeSPARK's model of care offering an individualized treatment approach. All services are offered free of charge for our guests. The first step is a welcome meeting with one of our counselors. At this meeting guests learn more about our wrap-around approach to care, which includes support groups, classes and workshops and individual services.

Population(s) Served
People with diseases and illnesses
Families

NAVIGATING HEALTH THROUGH WELLNESS PROGRAM

“Forty-one percent of Americans can expect to be diagnosed with cancer at some point in their life.” Yet, our current medical climate is such that physicians must allocate more time for administrative responsibilities, causing the patient-doctor relationship to suffer. This means that a patient has about 15 minutes to digest and understand all the symptoms, treatments, side effects, and myriad next steps a cancer diagnosis brings.

This leaves a patient overwhelmed, confused, and psycho-emotionally stressed, all which goes directly against research which shows "information should be tailored to each patient's expectations and preferences...as well as to the patient's individual diagnosis and clinical situation." Because of this gaping need in care, weSPARK's Navigating Health through Wellness program was born.

One of the many things that makes weSPARK’s Navigating Health through Wellness program unique is that often times it is the patient’s health-care provider that makes the referral to our organization.

Since opening our doors in 2001, our program team has worked diligently to build and maintain collaborations with not only individual practitioners but also such organizations as Kaiser, City of Hope, Cedars Sinai, St. Joseph’s Medical Center, Disney Cancer Center, UCLA Medical Center, American Cancer Society, and, of course, USC Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center.

The medical providers and their team understand that their patients will receive the individual, extra support they need after receiving a cancer diagnosis or re-diagnosis– all at no cost.

All Navigating Health through Wellness guests are matched with an in-house team who offer free, one-on-one service, providing the guest and their loved ones the time, guidance, and education they need to navigate toward wellness. This team -- which consists of a social worker, oncology nurse navigator, oncology nutritionist, and acupuncturist -- works collaboratively to create an individualized level of care.

Specifically:

Social workers provide information and referrals on the potentially life-transformative (financial, housing, etc.) changes, as studies consistently show cancer costs negatively impact a patient’s recovery. In addition, our social workers provide tangible information and resources how to best navigate their specific insurance, financial, emotional, and health needs. Our social workers also conduct crisis counseling and support groups for the patient and loved ones, including caregiver, grief, and children/teen.

Our oncology nurse navigator offers medical resources and aids in creating a questionnaire for patients and family to present to the patient’s medical team. They also assist in guiding patients in managing their symptoms and side effects and facilitating timely access to medical and psychological care.

Oncology nutritionists create an individual plan based on each patient’s specific diagnosis and treatment side effects.

Our practitioners provide integrative one-on-one services (e.g. guided imagery, yoga, reiki, reflexology, healing touch) to aid in healing.

Our workshops provide inspirational and educational tools to empower our guests to navigate their diagnosis.

As always, this program, like all weSPARK programs, have no cost, regardless of income, race, religious affiliation, age or where they go for treatment.

Population(s) Served
Families

Special programs and information targeting our spanish speaking guests.

Population(s) Served
People with diseases and illnesses
Multiracial people

weSPARK's kids (4-12 years old) and teen programs (13-18 years old) was developed for this population to support them when a significant person in their lives are going through a cancer diagnosis or death from cancer.

Population(s) Served
Children and youth

Healing therapies include Reiki, Qi Gong, Reflexology, Spiritual Counseling, Hypnotherapy, Ayurveda and Acupuncture. In addition, everyone is encouraged to meet with our Nurse Navigator and Nutritionist.

Population(s) Served
People with diseases and illnesses
Families

weSPARK provides support groups for cancer patients at all stages, including specific groups for men, young adults, caregivers, children and those who are grieving. Groups meet weekly and are led by licensed clinicians

Population(s) Served
Families
People with diseases and illnesses

Where we work

Our Sustainable Development Goals

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn more about Sustainable Development Goals.

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

From the beginning, weSPARK’s mission has been to help our guests address the multiple effects of a cancer diagnosis, including financial hardships, emotional turmoil, relationship issues, and life changes. Our programs promote healing, alleviate the emotional and physical side effects of treatment, and help guests navigate the healthcare system to explore all treatment and end of life options. Moreover, weSPARK is committed to providing all services at no charge to our guests. We never want financial means or insurance coverage to dictate who receives care and supportive services.

Navigating Health Through Wellness ™ (NHTW)
Navigating Health Through Wellness (NHTW) is weSPARK’s innovative model of care—an approach that is so unique we are in the process of obtaining a trademark. Our integrative approach serves the whole person and family while medical treatment focuses only on the disease itself and accompanying physical symptoms. NHTW provides guests with the opportunity to work individually with the weSPARK treatment team and develop a customized plan of care incorporating a variety of modalities:
• A 30-minute intake session with a licensed therapist to introduce the NHTW model and assess each guest’s individual needs;
• An oncology nurse navigator and licensed social worker to assist guests in finding their way through the complicated world of healthcare and insurance;
• Nutritional counseling provided by a registered dietitian with an oncology specialty to manage symptoms and increase awareness of health needs, especially as the body undergoes stressful t

Navigating Health Through Wellness (NHTW) is weSPARK’s innovative model of care. Our integrative approach serves the whole person and family while medical treatment focuses only on the disease itself and accompanying physical symptoms. We work individually with the weSPARK treatment team and develop a plan of care incorporating a variety of modalities:
• A 30-minute intake session to assess each guest’s needs;
• An oncology nurse navigator and licensed social worker to assist guests in finding their way through the complicated world of healthcare & insurance;
• Nutritional counseling with a registered dietitian with an oncology specialty to manage symptoms, increase awareness of health needs, as the body undergoes stressful treatments;
• Support groups led by licensed therapists which address treatment phases and language such as our weeSPARK Children’s Group and Spanish-language programs;
• Therapeutic exercise, mindfulness, and meditation programs;
• and so much more!

We are dedicated to continued provision of crucial services to our guests, but the numbers often cannot reflect the true impact of our work. Our greatest accomplishments are achieved by providing services that alleviate pain and suffering and promote the welfare of our guests. The best measure of our success is revealed through guest feedback, so we want to share a few of their comments with you:

“In the Kid’s Group, I’ve learned that it’s ok to express my feelings.”
weSPARK guest Jimmy (8 years old)

“The support and guidance I received form others in my groups helped to make even the most difficult days manageable.”
weSPARK guest Maria

“weSPARK has been a great help and comfort during these trying times. The Men’s Support Group has illuminated the dark subject of cancer with great information. It has truly been a life saver.”
weSPARK guest Jerry

Financials

weSPARK Cancer Support Center
lock

Unlock financial insights by subscribing to our monthly plan.

Subscribe

Unlock nonprofit financial insights that will help you make more informed decisions. Try our monthly plan today.

  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

Want to see how you can enhance your nonprofit research and unlock more insights?
Learn more about GuideStar Pro.

Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

lock

Connect with nonprofit leaders

Subscribe

Build relationships with key people who manage and lead nonprofit organizations with GuideStar Pro. Try a low commitment monthly plan today.

  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

Want to see how you can enhance your nonprofit research and unlock more insights? Learn More about GuideStar Pro.

lock

Connect with nonprofit leaders

Subscribe

Build relationships with key people who manage and lead nonprofit organizations with GuideStar Pro. Try a low commitment monthly plan today.

  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

Want to see how you can enhance your nonprofit research and unlock more insights? Learn More about GuideStar Pro.

weSPARK Cancer Support Center

Board of directors
as of 12/10/2020
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Scott Williams

Executive Producer - NCIS Television Show

Term: 2017 - 2020

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? No
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? No
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? No
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? No
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? No

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 11/30/2020

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? GuideStar partnered on this section with CHANGE Philanthropy and Equity in the Center.

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
White/Caucasian/European
Gender identity
Female
Sexual orientation
Decline to state
Disability status
Decline to state

Race & ethnicity

No data

Gender identity

No data

 

No data

Sexual orientation

No data

Disability

No data