Core Compassion Project® is a nonprofit organization dedicated to offering Pilates scholarships to breast cancer patients in order to reduce the side effects of breast cancer treatment. Specialized Pilates fitness training helps to restore physical strength and mental well being.
Our program is designed for those with breast cancer to help ease the transition from treatment to daily life activities. The big challenge faced by many breast cancer survivors is fatigue both during and after cancer treatment.
Radiation and chemotherapy can cause one to feel tired and unable to perform daily activities. Pilates offers strength, confidence and quality of life to survivors. Focus is on quality of movement rather than quantity.
In 2011, I started working with a client who had just gone through surgery for breast cancer. Not long after I began working with my second client. In my journey to help these women as much as possible the idea of a small non-profit was born. I remember meeting with my accountant and telling him that there are so many women who cannot afford Pilates due to mounting medical expenses. I didn't have any nonprofit experience, but I gathered business people who I knew could help me. This is how Core Compassion Project was born. We are currently 100 percent volunteer and our Board of Directors is a mix of past recipients, business women and women who believe in the healing power of Pilates. Shortly after starting this nonprofit, my mom was diagnosed with colon cancer, my three year-old nephew was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia and my dad is now fighting lung cancer. In addition to recipients who come through my studio with breast cancer, I have experience teaching clients who have battled multiple cancers seeking to gain strength from the their work in the studio. We have put almost 100 women through our project locally. That's 1,000 hours of Pilates to help fight the side effects of breast cancer!
Where there is pain, there is purpose. I made the decision to write a book to help breast cancer fighters, The Jill Hinson Method for Breast Cancer, and a teacher training program that will allow Core Compassion Project to expand into other studios. We launched our affiliate program this summer! I am extremely proud of my work, the unconditional support and love poured into the program from my medical, business and Pilates community. I will never forget when Great Soles reached out to me during my first MATraiser fundraiser last October, wanting to send grip socks for me to sell inside my studio with 100 percent of the proceeds benefiting Core Compassion Project. I paused for a moment thinking, "Wow! My industry believes in the work of Core Compassion Project as much as I do !"
What is your go to fitness regime? My favorite workout will always be my Pilates practice. I include cardio, strength training and yoga in my regimen every single week, and I never did this before seeing so much cancer in my life. We need to cross-train our bodies, and this is why the Jill Hinson Method for Breast Cancer (my home-based program) is a mix of aerobics, range of motion, balance and Pilates matwork. Obviously, my favorite studio is Core Studio Pilates in Indian Trail, NC! (I might own it! ha!)
How has your path to fitness affected you? Core Compassion Project has changed my life. I know every person coming into my studio is battling something, and it is my job to teach them strength and love them. I am thankful to Great Soles for standing by Core Compassion Project and giving so generously to our cause. Together we are making a difference.
It's not hard to be #greatsolesforgreatsouls as teachers and human beings. My faith has always taught me to love others. We just need to take the time to put ourselves to the side for a moment. The true blessing and reward is seeing others heal and get stronger from a very nasty and unfair disease. I often tell folks, find a cause that is important to you and give with your whole heart.