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Caring Connections

The primary goal of Caring Connections is decreasing isolation and mortality in women with breast and cervical cancer, while increasing advocacy and empowerment.

Through Caring Connections, a cooperative women’s health program of the Bangor Y and Eastern Maine Medical Center (EMMC), women, age 40 and over, who meet program guidelines can receive no-cost pap tests, pelvic exams, clinical breast exams, mammograms, and other related tests.  The women enrolled in Caring Connections receive breast and cervical health education services, along with advocacy and navigator/transportation assistance related to their breast and cervical health services.

Caring Connections also provides community education and support regarding breast and cervical health as well as other important women’s health issues, such as osteoporosis and menopause.

Caring Connections is made possible through the support of its community partners which include:  Eastern Maine Medical Center, Healthcare Charities, the Maine Breast & Cervical Health Program, the Maine Affiliate of the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation,  the Avon Foundation for Women Breast Health Outreach Program, and the Borman Family Foundation.

The most recent Caring Connections Newsletter can be accessed below.  If you would like to receive a notice when a new issue of the newsletter is published please contact us at caringconnections@bangorY.org.

Download the March/April Caring Connections Newsletter

Download the January/February Caring Connections Newsletter


Caring Connections Breast Cancer Support Groups

Support groups can help calm the emotional and other concerns brought on by the life-changing diagnosis of breast cancer.  The support group is a place to talk about those topics that may be difficult to discuss with family and friends.

Groups meet regularly in Bangor, Calais, Millinocket, and Pittsfield.  Additional experienced group leaders reside in the Dover-Foxcroft and Ellsworth areas and are available to assist diagnosed women.  The groups provide resources, support and information, along with the opportunity to connect with other survivors who are in various stages of treatment and healing.  

Meeting Times in Bangor:

Wednesday, 12:30 – 1:45 p.m.
Isaac Farrar Mansion on Union Street, Bangor – After the meeting, swim time and upper-body exercise in the Means Pool (warm water) is offered for interested support group members from 2 - 3 p.m.  (Between Memorial Day and Labor Day this group meets on the second and fourth Wednesday only.  )

If you plan to attend one of the meetings for the first time, please arrive 15 minutes early, and call ahead so a staff can be available to greet you and introduce you to the group.

For more information call Caring Connections at 941-2808.  

Meeting times in other towns or cities are listed in the Caring Connections Newsletters.  You are encouraged to call 941-2808 for information about the meeting schedule.

The Women's Network
Women newly diagnosed with breast cancer quickly discover that talking with someone who has faced a similar diagnosis helps them know they are understood.  The Women’s Network is part of the breast cancer support group system and was formed as a way for women with breast cancer to connect with other survivors by phone or e-mail.  Caring Connections links those who have similar diagnoses, treatments, questions or concerns.  

Retreat Ropes Group

Bridging The Gap

Bridging the Gap (BTG) provides no-cost breast health exams and imaging to women ages 30-39 who have a strong family history of breast cancer or have symptoms of concern. Women in their 20's with breast symptoms can also receive services at no cost.  Women must qualify financially and be underinsured or uninsured. 

If you are a woman between 20 and 39 years old, and are concerned about your breast health, call Caring Connections at 941-2808

Breast health medical services are provided by Eastern Maine Medical Center and the Center for Family Medicine at the Eastern Maine Healthcare Mall.  Women enrolled in BTG are offered additional support, such as transportation assistance to appointments, advocacy, and navigation services.

Bridging The Gap also provides breast health education services to many communities.  If your group is interested in breast health education contact Caring Connections at 941-2808.

Bridging the Gap is funded by a grant from the Maine Affiliate of the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation.

Bridging Books

Bridging Books provides resource and information packets to women newly diagnosed with breast cancer. Over 50 participating surgeons and other breast health/cancer sites in Eastern and Northern Maine give a packet containing a foundation book and other resource materials to women on the day of or close to the date of diagnosis. Bridging Books is funded by a grant from the Maine Affiliate of the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation.

Bone Health & Discussion Group

Caring Connections provides a Bone Health Group every month that provides speakers on maintaining or improving bone health and related topics.  Calcium-rich food samples and recipes are also provided. You are invited whether you have strong bones, osteopenia (some bone loss), or osteoporosis. Learn how to enhance both your bone health and overall health through daily lifestyle choices.

Thrive with Exercise

This fitness program will provide an atmosphere of encouragement, exercise, and individual and group motivation in order to alleviate the side effects of breast cancer treatments and improve self-esteem. Click here to learn more about Thrive with Exercise!

Call Caring Connections at 941-2808 for meeting dates and topics or to be placed on the mailing list.