This program is being offered virtually through Zoom. In order to participate and receive the Zoom link, register by clicking the RSVP button above or by emailing programs@smithcenter.org.

You will receive the Zoom information no later than the morning of your program.

with Trudy-Ann Brown, LGSW

Loss of a Parent to Cancer Support Group

The loss of a parent from cancer brings with it many complex feelings. Sadness, anger, and regret are just a few of the feelings you may experience. Sometimes friends – and even family members – don’t understand these feelings.

This support group provides a monthly opportunity to join a group of people who may understand.


The Loss of a Parent to Cancer Support Group meets Monthly on the 4th Monday from 6:00-7:30pm ET.

About Trudy-Ann Brown, LGSW

Trudy-Ann was originally born in Jamaica and was raised in The Bahamas before moving to the United States in 2017. She attended Temple University and majored in Political Science and then attended Columbia University School of Social Work where she attained her MSW degree. Trudy-Ann’s interest in palliative care was due to her volunteer experience at Rosary Hill Nursing Home in Westchester, New York. This experience changed the trajectory of her social work career as she realized the necessity for palliative and hospice care for individuals with life threatening and chronic illnesses. Outside of social work, Trudy-Ann enjoys reading, listening to podcasts, and exploring all a new city has to offer.

This program is being offered virtually through Zoom. In order to participate and receive the Zoom link, register by clicking the RSVP button above or by emailing programs@smithcenter.org.

You will receive the Zoom information no later than the morning of your program.

with Mindy Brodsky, LCSWA

in partnership with Tigerlily Foundation

*Please note that by registering for this program, you consent to have your name and email shared with Tigerlily Foundation. Tigerlily only collects this information for data purposes and it will not be shared with any other parties.

Loss of a Loved One to Cancer Support Group

This monthly support group, facilitated by a Licensed Graduate Social Worker, is for anyone who has lost a loved one to cancer. As a group, we will explore the impact of loss and find ways to cope with grief together.


The Loss of a Loved One to Cancer Support Group will meet Monthly on the first Wednesday from 6:00 – 7:00pm ET.


Sponsored by The Washington Home

The Washington Home

This support group is sponsored by The Washington Home.

The Washington Home (TWH) is a DC-based foundation that seeks to improve the lives of the elderly and those facing end of life, strengthen senior communities and reduce inequality in access to care. Our philanthropic vision is grounded in a commitment to pursue caregiver support, enhance connection and foster respect and dignity for seniors. We invest in local, community efforts to address social isolation, caregiver relief, food insecurity and specialized health care for seniors and the critically ill.


About Mindy Brodsky, LCSWA

Mindy Brodsky

Mindy Brodsky specializes in trauma-informed, strengths-based counseling with a passion for integrative health and healing. Mindy honors her clients as the experts of their lives, and she strives to provide a supportive and safe environment.
After a career in social justice advocacy and her own challenging health journey, Mindy aspires to meet her clients where they are to help them achieve their goals.

This program is being offered virtually through Zoom. In order to register and receive the Zoom link, visit the <Healing Circles Global Website>

If you have any questions about this healing circle or registration, please email olivia@smithcenter.org.

with Kiersten Gallagher & Barbara Reid members of the Grief Team at Healing Circles Global

“Each person’s grief is as unique as their fingerprint. But what everyone has in common is that no matter how they grieve, they share a need for their grief to be witnessed.”

-David Kessler

If you’ve lost a loved one, a healing circle for those in grief is an opportunity to share what’s on your heart and mind, to listen, and be listened to deeply and generously.

Our healing circles are a safe and supportive space to walk with each other through these times.  Each circle is a blend of sharing and silence, compassion and curiosity. Our agreements ensure acceptance and confidentiality. We honor our own unique paths to healing and respect the choices of others.

This is a single circle where we can reflect on where we are with our grief journeys as we move into the new year. Newcomers and returners all welcome.

Please note: Healing circles are groups of peers who support one another through deep listening and compassion. Circle participants abide by agreements, including agreements around confidentiality. The volunteers who host healing circles do not provide medical or psychotherapeutic advice or treatment. Participation in a healing circle does not replace the care provided by a qualified healthcare professional.


Healing circles are offered at no charge. If you’re able, Healing Circles Global invites you to <make a gift> to help cover the cost of participating.

Suggested Donation for one circle: $12 covers the cost of your participation in one circle

About Healing Circles Global

Healing Circles Global is a nonprofit whose vision is to provide positive social support to anyone who asks for it. This takes place in small circles built on a framework that brings out the best in people. It encourages participants to treat one another with kindness and respect, hold one another’s stories in confidence, withhold judgment, and honor one another’s unique path to healing without advising, fixing, or rescuing.

Circle participants work together to explore the best ways to remove obstacles to healing, alleviate suffering, and deepen their capacity to heal. They also access their own inner guidance to determine where the greatest healing—physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual—can occur.


About Kiersten Gallagher

Kiersten Gallagher – Cancer Support Programs Director

Kiersten has served as the Cancer Support Program Director for Smith Center since 2014. Before coming to Smith Center, she had the privilege to serve individuals and families living with cancer at Wellness House of Annapolis. Kiersten aims to offer programs to reduce stress and help participants to see the world we live in from different perspectives. She thoroughly enjoys teaching yoga and creativity classes at Smith Center and encourages gentle movement and creativity in the healing process. Kiersten is a certified yoga instructor through Yoga Alliance and also has her YCAT (Yoga Therapy in Cancer and Chronic Illness) Professional Certification through the Integral Yoga Academy. She has completed Patient Navigation training through Smith Center’s Institute for Integrative Oncology Navigation and has also completed the Commonweal Healing Circles: Advanced Cancer Support Training. Kiersten is also certified in CLIMB®(Children’s Lives Include Moments of Bravery) a program that aims to build upon the strengths of children and increase his/her ability to cope with stress associated with a parent’s illness. She believes in a holistic approach to healing, human relationships and is grateful for each and every day. Kiersten has also completed the Compassion Cultivation Training – CCT™ an 8-week program, developed at Stanford University, with insights and techniques from psychology, neuroscience, and contemplative practice. In her spare time, you may find Kiersten laughing with friends, cycling, taking art classes, practicing yoga and spending time with her husband Shane, son Liam, and dogs Beans and Pablo.

About Barbara Reid

Barbara lives in the U.K. and has her own supervision, facilitation and training practice. The wonder of Zoom has enabled her to partner with others over long distances. She draws on contemplative approaches and reflective practices to support people through life passages and transitions, also offering services and programs to companies, non-profits, community groups and individuals. She is a committed mindfulness practitioner and meditator and enjoys introducing people to the practices of self-care and self-compassion that characterise this way of being in the world. She also likes to bring ‘talking circles’ into her practice and her work, nourishing the qualities of deep listening and attending to our inner voice through creative reflection on poetry, music, journaling and art. Barbara is an accredited facilitator of Circles of Trust with the Center for Courage & Renewal in the U.S., and is part of the ‘Grieving Together’ circles facilitation team with Healing Circles Global, also based in the U.S. She is also an accredited teacher of Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction and Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy programs in the U.K., and in addition is an experienced teacher trainer for people seeking to do this work, having served at the University of Bangor’s (Wales) Centre for Mindfulness Research & Practice for a few years. She recently completed training with David Kessler Training and is certified as a grief educator. Barbara likes to have joy in her life, and finds this in her circle of friends, in the world of folk music, working with textiles, Nordic walking and t’ai chi, and of course her cats Mizzle and Perkin.

This program is being offered virtually through Zoom. In order to participate and receive the Zoom link, register by clicking the RSVP button above or by emailing programs@smithcenter.org.

You will receive the Zoom information no later than the morning of your program.

with Trudy-Ann Brown, LGSW

Loss of a Parent to Cancer Support Group

The loss of a parent from cancer brings with it many complex feelings. Sadness, anger, and regret are just a few of the feelings you may experience. Sometimes friends – and even family members – don’t understand these feelings.

This support group provides a monthly opportunity to join a group of people who may understand.


The Loss of a Parent to Cancer Support Group meets Monthly on the 4th Monday from 6:00-7:30pm ET.

About Trudy-Ann Brown, LGSW

Trudy-Ann was originally born in Jamaica and was raised in The Bahamas before moving to the United States in 2017. She attended Temple University and majored in Political Science and then attended Columbia University School of Social Work where she attained her MSW degree. Trudy-Ann’s interest in palliative care was due to her volunteer experience at Rosary Hill Nursing Home in Westchester, New York. This experience changed the trajectory of her social work career as she realized the necessity for palliative and hospice care for individuals with life threatening and chronic illnesses. Outside of social work, Trudy-Ann enjoys reading, listening to podcasts, and exploring all a new city has to offer.

This program is being offered virtually through Zoom. In order to participate and receive the Zoom link, register by clicking the RSVP button above or by emailing programs@smithcenter.org.

You will receive the Zoom information no later than the morning of your program.

with Mindy Brodsky, LCSWA

in partnership with Tigerlily Foundation

*Please note that by registering for this program, you consent to have your name and email shared with Tigerlily Foundation. Tigerlily only collects this information for data purposes and it will not be shared with any other parties.

Loss of a Loved One to Cancer Support Group

This monthly support group, facilitated by a Licensed Graduate Social Worker, is for anyone who has lost a loved one to cancer. As a group, we will explore the impact of loss and find ways to cope with grief together.


The Loss of a Loved One to Cancer Support Group will meet Monthly on the first Wednesday from 6:00 – 7:00pm ET.


Sponsored by The Washington Home

The Washington Home

This support group is sponsored by The Washington Home.

The Washington Home (TWH) is a DC-based foundation that seeks to improve the lives of the elderly and those facing end of life, strengthen senior communities and reduce inequality in access to care. Our philanthropic vision is grounded in a commitment to pursue caregiver support, enhance connection and foster respect and dignity for seniors. We invest in local, community efforts to address social isolation, caregiver relief, food insecurity and specialized health care for seniors and the critically ill.


About Mindy Brodsky, LCSWA

Mindy Brodsky

Mindy Brodsky specializes in trauma-informed, strengths-based counseling with a passion for integrative health and healing. Mindy honors her clients as the experts of their lives, and she strives to provide a supportive and safe environment.
After a career in social justice advocacy and her own challenging health journey, Mindy aspires to meet her clients where they are to help them achieve their goals.

This program is being offered virtually through Zoom. Please click <here> to register for this circle.

with Judith McFarlane & Mark Malinak

Grief Circle

Please join us in a series Healing Circles for Grief “to discover the extent and limits of what is lost, what is left and what is possible.”  – John Schneider

If you have lost a loved one, this is an opportunity to share what is on your heart and mind right now, to listen and be listened to deeply and generously. Together we create a safe space for listening to messages from our inner experience. 

Our healing circles are a safe and supportive space to walk with each other through these times. Each circle is a blend of sharing and silence, compassion, and curiosity. Our agreements ensure acceptance and confidentiality. We honor our own unique paths to healing and respect the choices of others.


Some Assumptions about Grief

  • The experience of grief is unique for each individual. While we can make some general assumptions, there is no template that describes the experience for all people.
  • Grief is cumulative. That is, each time loss is grieved, the grief encompasses the lifetime of loss and the remnants of each experience.
  • Grief following a significant loss is most often a lifelong process, with each pivotal point in life bringing the grief back up to be processed from a new perspective.
  • Grief, loss and suffering fundamentally changes and reshapes the individual.
  • Grief is not about forgetting or disconnecting. Rather, healthy grief is about remembering the parts of self that get lost amidst the experience and reorienting the individual in their relationship with self, the world and others.
  • Grief is a whole body experience: emotional, physical, spiritual and intellectual. Each have a wide range of expression which can cue us that grief is present.
  • While grief and trauma are often intertwined there are significant differences between them. Trauma should be addressed with trauma specific interventions that often go beyond what is possible in circles.

Adapted from Khris Ford


Grieving Together Healing Circle will meet Weekly on Wednesdays from 12:00-1:30pm EST (9:00am-10:30am PST) for 6 weeks.

Grief Circle Dates:

  • December 6, 13, 20 & 27
  • January 3 & 10

About Judith McFarlane

Judith McFarlane is a Professor of Nursing at Texas Woman’s University in Houston, Texas. Trained by Healing Circles Global, Judith volunteers with the Grieving Together Team to Host Healing Circles for people grieving the loss of a loved one. Participants from all over the world including, North, South, and Central America, Asia, Africa, Europe, Australia, and the Pacific Islands gather virtually once a week for 90 minutes to share their experiences with grief using the Healing Circles method of generous and attentive listening. Judith completed the David Kessler Institute 12-month training certificate course to be a Grief Educator.

About Mark Malinak

Mark is retired, having worked as a substance abuse/mental health counselor and wilderness counselor for 25 years. He lives alone with his yellow lab mix dog Buster in a small post and beam house in western Massachusetts. Mark’s wife Barbara passed away suddenly in October 2019. He loves poetry, writing, and tribal ambient music. Among other hobbies, Mark enjoys hiking and walking in the woods and the forests of the Berkshires.

This program is being offered virtually through Zoom. In order to participate and receive the Zoom link, register by clicking the RSVP button above or by emailing programs@smithcenter.org.

You will receive the Zoom information no later than the morning of your program.

with Anne Kelemen

Loss of a Parent to Cancer Support Group

The loss of a parent from cancer brings with it many complex feelings. Sadness, anger, and regret are just a few of the feelings you may experience. Sometimes friends – and even family members – don’t understand these feelings.

This support group provides a monthly opportunity to join a group of people who may understand.


The Loss of a Parent to Cancer Support Group meets Monthly on the 4th Monday from 6:00-7:30pm ET.

This program is being offered virtually through Zoom. In order to participate and receive the Zoom link, register by clicking the RSVP button above or by emailing programs@smithcenter.org.

You will receive the Zoom information no later than the morning of your program.

with Mindy Brodsky, LCSWA

in partnership with Tigerlily Foundation

*Please note that by registering for this program, you consent to have your name and email shared with Tigerlily Foundation. Tigerlily only collects this information for data purposes and it will not be shared with any other parties.

Loss of a Loved One to Cancer Support Group

This monthly support group, facilitated by a Licensed Graduate Social Worker, is for anyone who has lost a loved one to cancer. As a group, we will explore the impact of loss and find ways to cope with grief together.


The Loss of a Loved One to Cancer Support Group will meet Monthly on the first Wednesday from 6:00 – 7:00pm ET.


Sponsored by The Washington Home

The Washington Home

This support group is sponsored by The Washington Home.

The Washington Home (TWH) is a DC-based foundation that seeks to improve the lives of the elderly and those facing end of life, strengthen senior communities and reduce inequality in access to care. Our philanthropic vision is grounded in a commitment to pursue caregiver support, enhance connection and foster respect and dignity for seniors. We invest in local, community efforts to address social isolation, caregiver relief, food insecurity and specialized health care for seniors and the critically ill.


About Mindy Brodsky, LCSWA

Mindy Brodsky

Mindy Brodsky specializes in trauma-informed, strengths-based counseling with a passion for integrative health and healing. Mindy honors her clients as the experts of their lives, and she strives to provide a supportive and safe environment.
After a career in social justice advocacy and her own challenging health journey, Mindy aspires to meet her clients where they are to help them achieve their goals.

This program is being offered virtually through Zoom. In order to participate and receive the Zoom link, register by clicking the RSVP button above or by emailing olivia@smithcenter.org.

You will receive the Zoom information no later than the morning of your program.

with Gayle Danley, national & international poetry slam champion

Gayle Performing Poetry in Frederick, MD
Gayle Performing in Frederick, MD

Slam poetry began in Chicago’s bars and coffeehouses in the late 1980’s. This phenomenal blend of spoken and written word turns every willing soul into a poet while providing relief from the stresses of the day. Master teaching artist Gayle Danley has shared her down-on-the-floor style of performance poetry all over the country in classrooms, lecture halls, theatres and even on CBS’ 60 minutes.

 

Join her for much laughter, emotion, comfort, understanding and instruction in the art of slam poetry. Her 4-step process has been tried in the fire and proven to be an effective antidote to the blues of the day and the isolation that threatens to drive us mad!

Suggested Donation: $15


Poem for my Sisters With Sons:
Breathe:
Pull a clean fist of air inside your self
and let it rest there
wide and unfrightened inside your belly
asking for nothing
Remember when the baby boy was there
Stirring and fighting and kicking things around
inside of you.
And where is he now?
Kicking at air
asking for everything
Defiance rippling on the edge of his skin
Beautiful as water
And do not worry if your brown boy 
doesn’t smile enough
as long as he still smiles at you:
over dinner
over the news
from beneath a curtain of hair tangled and sprawled,
it is enough
Does he still know your name?
Good.
Does he still reach for you when there is blood
Does he still make you want to kill him on Monday mornings
and kill FOR him on Saturday nights?
Good
Is he still
breathing
good 
good 
good
Your turn:
breathe
again
until all
the air you can find
makes home
 within your body
Your black sad
scared hopeful body
Round and trembling
like your mother’s
Rest now
tomorrow will come before you know it
with her hair on fire and her knee on your neck
Your son knows you are his home
He has memorized all the valleys in your voice
every scream and grin
He ain’t going anywhere far
He is not leaving you
He will not vanish
he will not stray
Your breath is his
Your love is his
Never leaving
never dying
never going
away

And, check out more of Gayle’s work on YouTube here!


About Gayle Danley

Gayle Danley

Soon after crushing the competition at Asheville’s National Poetry Slam in 1994, Gayle Danley entered America’s classrooms teaching thousands of children how to access their emotions through the force of words. She performed and taught her way from Maryland Young Audience’s Artist of the Year, to National Young Audience’s Artist of the Year. She’s also both a former national and international poetry slam champion. CBS 60 Minutes profiled her work with middle schoolers as well as the Baltimore Sun, Washington Post and New York Times.

For the past five years, Gayle’s Grieffriend sessions have helped women who are living with AIDS, widows, incarcerated youth and those struggling with drug addiction and recovery use poetry to cope and bravely face life’s challenges.

Gayle was recently named Maryland Library Association Poet of the Year.

This program is being offered virtually through Zoom. Please click <here> to register for this circle.

with Paul Pucinelli & Mark Malinak

Grief Circle

Please join us in a series Healing Circles for Grief “to discover the extent and limits of what is lost, what is left and what is possible.”  – John Schneider

If you have lost a loved one, this is an opportunity to share what is on your heart and mind right now, to listen and be listened to deeply and generously. Together we create a safe space for listening to messages from our inner experience. 

Our healing circles are a safe and supportive space to walk with each other through these times. Each circle is a blend of sharing and silence, compassion, and curiosity. Our agreements ensure acceptance and confidentiality. We honor our own unique paths to healing and respect the choices of others.


Some Assumptions about Grief

  • The experience of grief is unique for each individual. While we can make some general assumptions, there is no template that describes the experience for all people.
  • Grief is cumulative. That is, each time loss is grieved, the grief encompasses the lifetime of loss and the remnants of each experience.
  • Grief following a significant loss is most often a lifelong process, with each pivotal point in life bringing the grief back up to be processed from a new perspective.
  • Grief, loss and suffering fundamentally changes and reshapes the individual.
  • Grief is not about forgetting or disconnecting. Rather, healthy grief is about remembering the parts of self that get lost amidst the experience and reorienting the individual in their relationship with self, the world and others.
  • Grief is a whole body experience: emotional, physical, spiritual and intellectual. Each have a wide range of expression which can cue us that grief is present.
  • While grief and trauma are often intertwined there are significant differences between them. Trauma should be addressed with trauma specific interventions that often go beyond what is possible in circles.

Adapted from Khris Ford


Grieving Together Healing Circle will meet Weekly on Saturdays from 11:00-12:30pm EST (8:00am-9:30am PST) for 6 weeks.

Grief Circle Dates:

  • October 28
  • November 4, 11, 18, 25
  • December 2

About Paul Puccinelli

Since 2011, Paul has been providing counseling services to children, adults, and couples.   Paul received a strong educational foundation from his graduate degree program at Dominican University, as well as advanced training at University of California San Francisco’s School of Medicine, where he completed a program focused on Interprofessional Palliative Care Education. During the last four years, he has developed a special interest in supporting people and caregivers dealing with Parkinson’s Disease.  And for the last three years, he has been hosting Grieving Together and Living w/ Cancer healing circles.

About Mark Malinak

Mark is retired, having worked as a substance abuse/mental health counselor and wilderness counselor for 25 years. He lives alone with his yellow lab mix dog Buster in a small post and beam house in western Massachusetts. Mark’s wife Barbara passed away suddenly in October 2019. He loves poetry, writing, and tribal ambient music. Among other hobbies, Mark enjoys hiking and walking in the woods and the forests of the Berkshires.