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Hope & Cope

(514) 340-8255


Founder and Chairman: Sheila Kussner, OC, OQ
Co-Presidents: Serena Black and Jeannette Valmont
Executive Director: Suzanne O’Brien, MA

Hope & Cope is a psychosocial support organization founded in 1981 by Sheila Kussner, OC, OQ, and a small group of dedicated volunteers. The staff of Hope & Cope along with over 400 volunteers, provide a comprehensive range of services to respond to the emotional and practical needs of men and women who are coping with the stress of a cancer diagnosis and its treatment.


Some of the services provided by Hope & Cope include:
  • One-on-one support
  • Hospital visits
  • Support groups
  • Library with books, audio/videotapes, dvds, pamphlets and music
  • Patient education lectures, workshops and information kits
  • Resource Centre: Wigs, scarves, turbans, Look Good....Feel Better (cosmetic workshop)
  • Palliative care and bereavement support
  • "Come As You Are": Special programming for young adults with cancer
  • Wellness Centre: a free-standing facility offering a nutrition program, a fully equipped exercise room and physical activities program, and complementary therapies such as yoga, relaxation training, art and choir.
The staff and volunteers at Hope & Cope work closely with the health care professionals at the Segal Cancer Centre, including the nurse navigators who coordinate the care of patients. Volunteers provide support and guidance at the oncology clinic, radiation oncology and the palliative care unit. Hope & Cope works in tandem with the Oncology and Aging Program, the Cancer Nutrition-Rehabilitation Program, the Adolescent and Young Adult Oncology Program, and the Louise Granofsky Psychosocial Oncology Program. In addition, Hope & Cope staff have a presence at medical rounds and hematology-oncology rounds. Staff and volunteers responsible for Hope & Cope’s library, which has an extensive collection, consult with their counterparts at the JGH Medical Library on a regular basis.

With the recruitment of Research Director Dr. Tanya Fitzpatrick, Hope & Cope is strengthening its research connections with McGill University, particularly in the fields of Social Work, Oncology and Physical and Occupational Therapy.

Hope & Cope continues to build partnerships and enhance connections at provincial, national and international levels. Staff have given presentations at the annual conferences of the Canadian Association of Psychosocial Oncology (CAPO), the International Psycho-Oncology Society (IPOS) and the Cancer Patient Education Network (CPEN). Hope & Cope is also actively involved in the Coalition priorité cancer au Québec (CPCQ) and the Lance Armstrong Foundation in the United States, and is affiliated with the Cancer Support Community (formerly The Wellness Community and Gilda's Club Worldwide) in the US. 

Staff list
Suzanne O'Brien, Executive Director
Scott Adams, Exercise Physiologist, Young Adult Coordinator
Alexander Chubunov, Research Assistant, Rehabilitation Exercice Oncology Program (REOP)
Mary Ann Dalzell, Clinical and Research Director, REOP
Anna Feindel, Palliative Care Coordinator
Dr. Tanya Fitzpatrick, Research Director
Rita Galluccio, Administrative Assistant
Hinda Goodman, Survivorship Program Coordinator
Marize Ibrahim, Research assistant, REOP
Marcelle Kecman, Wellness Centre Manager
Hena Kon, Communications Coordinator
Sandy Lipkus, Radiotherapy and En Famille Coordinator
Andria Morielli, Exercice physiologist
Sophie Picquot, Administrative Assistant, Welness Centre
Shirin Shallwani, Clinical Research Assistant
Nadia Smirnow, Reserach Assistant, REOP
Anouline Sintharaphone, Exercise Program Coordinator
Lora Tombari, Office Coordinator