Wrapping up 2012 - A letter from Shanti Norris


Shanti Norris, Co-Founder & Executive Director of Smith Center for Healing and the ArtsDear friends and supporters,

I write this having just completed our 63rd retreat for people with cancer. For 7 days, 8 participants and 10 staff live together to do the work of deep healing in the face of life threatening illness. It is a week filled with hard work and incredible joy.

I realized recently that I have spent more than a full year of my life, one week at a time, conducting these retreats. I wish you could witness first-hand how people attending these retreats come alive with a sense of deep purpose, renewed hope, and possibility even in the face of difficult circumstances. I want to thank you for making this possible year after year.

On the last evening of the retreat, we shared what we were each taking home:

“a sense that I can handle things now”

“a new found hope”

“a community of friends for life”

“a new understanding of health and healing – one of engagement with life –
of leaning into what is happening with hope and possibility.”

And then we danced together.

These retreats have been a model for everything we do at Smith Center and each one reminds me how important our work is to those affected by cancer. The enclosed update offers a glimpse into our other programs and their impact on the community. As we come to the end of our first full year since our grand re-opening, I want to share this with you and let you know how grateful our program participants are for your continued support.

We rely on you in many ways – through financial gifts, volunteering your time, and also referring those in need of our services. We hope you will consider making a tax-deductible donation this season by calling us at 202.483.8600 or making a secure online donation.

Sending you best wishes for a wonderful holiday season, and a terrific 2013. Thank you for caring.

All the best,

Shanti Norris



Shanti Norris
Co-Founder & Executive Director

P.S. – Don’t forget that any contribution you make today is fully tax-deductible. Every gift can make a real impact — just $50 helps to facilitate our monthly Young Adult Cancer Survivors meet-up; $500 can pay for a partial scholarship to allow a cancer patient to experience the deep healing of a weeklong retreat. We could not keep Smith Center running and help those who need us without your steadfast and generous support, so on behalf of our participants and staff, thank you from the bottom of our hearts.

 View our 2012 Program Summary to learn more about what your donation helps to support!

To Top