Community Navigation


Smith Center Community Patient NavigatorsWashington DC’s African-American residents face daunting cancer incidence and mortality rates. Smith Center offers free navigation services in our local community, through area churches and in partnership with local organizations.

Our six navigators reach out to individuals facing cancer, especially in underserved areas of our community, providing free outreach, education programs on wellness, cancer prevention, coping with cancer, and confidential navigation assistance to people with cancer and their caregivers.

Specifically, our highly trained Community Navigators work to:

  • Offer emotional support to individuals and their caregivers facing cancer from diagnosis through recovery and survivorship
  • Provide on-site information and facilitate access to screening, cancer treatment services and culturally appropriate community resources
  • Reduce the stress of living with cancer
  • Engage patients in taking ownership of their health and wellbeing
  • Empower patients with knowledge and skills to better cope with cancer and their treatments, and improve their quality of life
  • Facilitate physical, emotional, and spiritual healing of each individual
  • Inform and instruct in integrative therapies to better cope with cancer and treatment
DC Integrative Patient Navigation

Our Community Navigators also provide Education/Outreach Programs to the community through:

  • Presentations on a variety of topics, including: cultural barriers and myths regarding cancer, breast health and breast cancer, cancer screening and treatment, and community cancer resources.
  • Wellness workshops on a variety of topics, such as stress reduction and coping techniques, nutrition and cancer, exercise, and survivorship.

What Makes Our Community Navigation Program Unique?

  1. We use our groundbreaking integrative model of navigation that addresses structural barriers to care, but is fundamentally based on a strong educational and psychosocial foundation that supports the individual emotionally and encourages people to consciously get more involved in their healing process through the use of integrative therapies.
  2. We use highly trained lay survivors to build a deep bond of commonality and trust through the shared experience of cancer.
  3. We offer navigation throughout the cancer continuum: from screening through survivorship, with attention, information, and support given to each individual every step of the way.
  4. We adjust the system to the individual, so every patient feels heard.
  5. We empower each person we navigate, providing them the skills, tools, and information they need to make the experience of cancer less stressful and better integrated with their life.

Who Can Benefit from Community Patient Navigation?

Any resident of Washington, DC facing cancer can meet with a community navigator to receive free, confidential one-on-one support. If you have a loved one with cancer, are looking for information on cancer screening services, or have general questions about cancer, our community navigators are happy to be of assistance.

We invite you to attend any of our upcoming wellness workshops and educational/outreach events.

If you would like one of our navigators to address a group, please contact us at 202.483.8600.

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