Supporting Cancer

NEWS RELEASE – For Immediate Release:

Supporting Cancer Care through Lifestyle Interventions

Victoria, B.C., February 2, 2015 InspireHealth is announcing that starting February 1st, 2015 services will be offered at no cost to cancer patients and their chosen support person at the Vancouver Island – Victoria Centre. The launch of this initiative was made possible by a generous grant from the Victoria Foundation which will support program costs for the Vancouver Island-Victoria Centre.

InspireHealth is a not-for-profit health care organization funded by the BC Ministry of Health, individual and corporate donations as well as foundation grants and patient membership fees. InspireHealth’s vision for the future is to provide services at no cost to cancer patients and their families at all centres. InspireHealth has been in operation for over 17 years, with centres in the Lower Mainland – Vancouver, Vancouver Island – Victoria, the Southern Interior – Kelowna and a Virtual Centre (Online). InspireHealth has received international attention. For example in 2009, His Royal Highness, Prince Charles visited InspireHealth as part of his royal tour.

InspireHealth offers its patient members individualized guidance and support about lifestyle. Members have access to clinical consultations covering nutrition, exercise and counselling, advice about sleep, healthy communication, rekindling joy and passion in living, self-responsibility and their place in the community. Members also have access to a variety of cooking and fitness classes, mind-body practices and group discussions all supporting engagement in their own health.  Patients can engage with InspireHealth before, during and after standard cancer treatments.

“Recovery from cancer can be an emotionally and physically demanding experience for patients, but there is an opportunity for self-discovery and meaning that can be beneficial”, says Dr. Mimi Weldon, Medical Doctor and Clinical Director at InspireHealth in Victoria. “We are looking forward to offering our services at no charge to Vancouver Island and Gulf Island residents because we believe that cost should not be a barrier to a deeper exploration of health on the levels of mind, body and spirit.”

“The Victoria Foundation is delighted to support this long-term cancer care for the region’s residents,” noted Victoria Foundation CEO Sandra Richardson. “We are particularly pleased that the program is accessible to all cancer patients, regardless of their financial challenges.”

InspireHealth’s goal is to raise a total of $250,000 to be able to remove the annual membership fee that covers some of the operational and administrative costs of its programming.

Membership includes individual consultations with a medical doctor, nutritionist, exercise therapist and/or a clinical counsellor all focused on health during and after cancer. Classes include cooking classes, yoga, exercise and fitness, relaxation and meditation, small group discussions, acupressure and acupuncture. We also offer online programs and telephone appointments for patients living remotely.

CEO and co-founder of InspireHealth, Hal Gunn, MD sees a paradigm shift in health care: “As cancer survival rates improve our outlook is changing from looking at cancer as an acute illness to a condition that needs a long-term management approach. InspireHealth offers a patient-centred, health focused approach to cancer survivorship.”


WHO CAN JOIN?  Individuals that have a recent or past cancer diagnosis living on Vancouver Island or the Gulf Islands. An MSP number is required.

WHAT:   InspireHealth announces special fund provided in part by the Victoria Foundation to help Vancouver Island cancer survivors and their supports to gain free access to InspireHealth supportive oncology care services.  

WHEN: Starting in February 2015 Vancouver Island people living with cancer can apply to be new members of InspireHealth.

WHERE: InspireHealth’s Victoria location: 212-2187 Oak Bay Ave.  

REGISTER:  Call 1-888-734-7125, or send an email to InspireHealth has regular weekly information sessions available to any person curious to learn more. New members of InspireHealth should enroll in the two day LIFE Program to be provided once monthly.


ABOUT INSPIREHEALTH: At InspireHealth healing begins with you. InspireHealth is a community-based organization that provides supportive cancer care. We create an individualized program for people with a cancer diagnosis that encourages personal growth, higher quality of life, and improved outlook. We offer health programs that include services for support people, like family, friends and loved ones. Please visit the InspireHealth website at

ABOUT VICTORIA FOUNDATION: Established in 1936, the Victoria Foundation is Canada’s second oldest community foundation and the fifth largest of nearly 200 across the nation. The Victoria Foundation manages charitable gifts from donors whose generosity allows them to create permanent, income-earning funds. The proceeds from these funds are then distributed as grants for charitable or educational purposes. To date it has invested more than $143 million in people, projects and non-profit organizations that strengthen communities in B.C. and throughout Canada. Read more about the Victoria Foundation’s vision and mandate.

FOR MEDIA: Interview opportunity with Rachel Mark, Lead Exercise Therapist at InspireHealth. Patient members are also available to be interviewed at InspireHealth in Victoria. If interested, we can pre-arrange to have photo or video opportunities of some of InspireHealth’s fitness, mind-body, or cooking classes.


Mark Fernandes, Marketing & Communications Manager
P: 604.734.7125 ext. 242   C: 778-866-1039

Robert Janus, Director of Communications
Victoria Foundation
P. 250.381.5532   C. 250.886.6112