Glenna Maynus had never heard of Cornucopia Cancer Support Center – founded in 1995 – when she had breast cancer 10 years ago. It was not until later when she answered a call put out on her Northgate Park listserv to help drive a neighbor with cancer to the hospital that she learned about it. On the way home from that appointment the neighbor asked if they could stop at Cornucopia. “Wow, what a wonderful place,” Glenna thought.
Glenna had recently left her 20-year career at GlaxoSmithKline and was searching for a new challenge. “I did not know exactly what I was going to do, but I knew I wanted to do something to help cancer patients.” While reading an article in a magazine, Glenna discovered oncology massage. “I had a wonderful massage therapist who had helped me through my cancer, but I didn’t know there was a specialty [massage treatment] for cancer.”
Glenna trained at the Body Therapy Institute in a yearlong course to become a massage therapist. “During my training I did my externship at Cornucopia where I also was volunteering in the peer connect program helping answer questions for women who had a similar cancer to what I had.” Upon graduating from massage school, Glenna opened Quarter Moon Dreams Healing Arts, performing massages on both cancer patients as well as healthy people.
“Glenna really relieves the pain and suffering of our patients,” says Olivia Stancil, the director of community relations at Cornucopia. “She makes them feel renewed, revitalized and safe.”
“So many people had helped me through my cancer, and I want to do the same for others,” Glenna explains. After being declared cancer-free, “I was more conscious of life and living and not just doing,” she adds.
When Glenna first was diagnosed with her cancer someone told her, “It is going to suck, tell everyone you know because they are your support group, and say ‘yes’ when people ask if you need help.” A sentiment that proved true. “I was lucky I had support,” she says. “Cornucopia is there to help people who need more support.”
All services at Cornucopia – 20 W. Colony Pl. in Durham – are free to cancer patients and their caregivers, including counseling, Magnolia meals at home, oncology massage, acupuncture, health coaching, art cart and respite care for caregivers. The nonprofit is funded by individuals, fundraising events, community organizations, corporations and foundations. Learn more at cancersupport4u.org.