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About the SPIN-CHAT Webinars

Thanks to the success of the SPIN-CHAT (COVID-19 Home-isolation Activities Together) Program, SPIN is offering 11 weekly webinars of SPIN-CHAT's educational segments! Each will cover a different topic related to coping during COVID-19. The first session will be on Tuesday, February 2nd. Subsequent sessions will be held every Wednesday. Sessions are at 7 PM EST/EDT  (see below for other time zones). Join our engaging live expert talks and send us your questions during the Q&A period.

All webinars will be held at the following link: 

www.gotomeet.me/SPIN-CHAT

(Access code: 210-538-213)


WEBINAR RESOURCES: Access SPIN-CHAT materials and resources for each session free-of charge here


Time zone equivalency

SPIN-CHAT Website - Local Times
*A new time equivalency graphic will be posted following the start of North America's Daylight Savings Time (March 14th).


Presentation line-up


1. Tuesday, February 2nd, 2021: Healthy information management - Laura Dyas (Watch the recording here)
2. Wednesday, February 10th, 2021: Worry management (Part 1) - Ghassan El-Baalbaki (Watch the recording here)
3. Wednesday, February 17th, 2021: Relaxation techniques (Part 1) - Ghassan El-Baalbaki (Watch the recording here)
4. Wednesday, February 24th, 2021: Adapted home exercise (Part 1) - Kelsey Ellis & Delaney Duchek (Facebook event page here)
5. Wednesday, March 3rd, 2021: Home activity engagement (Part 1) - Laura Bustamante (Facebook event page here)
6. Wednesday, March 10th, 2021: Worry management (Part 2) - Ghassan El-Baalbaki (Facebook event page here)
7. Wednesday, March 17th, 2021: Relaxation techniques (Part 2) - Ghassan El-Baalbaki (Facebook event page here)
8. Wednesday, March 24th, 2021: Adapted home exercise (Part 2) - Kelsey Ellis & Delaney Duchek (Facebook event page here)
9. Wednesday, March 31st, 2021: Home activity engagement (Part 2) - Laura Bustamante (Facebook event page here)
10. Wednesday, April 7th, 2021: Worry management (Part 3) - Ghassan El-Baalbaki (Facebook event page here)
11. Wednesday, April 14th, 2021: Adapted home exercise (Part 3) - Kelsey Ellis & Delaney Duchek (Facebook event page here)


Meet our experts:


Laura Dyas

Laura Dyas

SPIN-SSLED Training Director & English Program Instructor

Laura Dyas is a trained social worker with over 30 years of experience working in the non-profit field. She has served as the Executive Director of the Michigan Chapter of the Scleroderma Foundation since 2008. As Training Director of the SPIN-SSLED Program, Laura helped develop SPIN's videoconference-based training program for scleroderma support group leaders. Since 2018, Laura has trained over 100 support group leaders, via the SPIN-SSLED Program. She also provides monthly post-SSLED teleconferences and played an important role in the SPIN-CHAT Program.





Ghassan El-Baalbaki

Ghassan El-Baalbaki

Psychologist


Dr. El-Baalbaki was a post-doctorate fellow in Psychiatry at McGill University and the Behavioural Health Research Group (2009-2010) where his work focused mainly on studying the correlates of pruritus with quality of life in scleroderma patients and on the measure of pain in Systemic Sclerosis. He is currently a Full Professor at the University of Quebec At Montreal (UQAM) in the Department of Psychology, and the Graduate Studies Director. He is developing research projects to study on the one hand the correlates of personality traits, quality of life and marital dynamics in patients suffering from either scleroderma, cancer, or anxiety disorders, and on the other hand to study the use of hypnosis in the management of procedural pain in medical settings and in chronic pain.



Kelsey Ellis-1

Kelsey Ellis

Kinesiotherapist, Exercise Specialist


Kelsey Ellis completed her Bachelor of Science degree with Honours in Human Kinetics in 2019 from St Francis Xavier University. She is currently a second-year Thesis-Based Master of Science student in the Health and Wellness Lab at the University of Calgary. She is completing her thesis in the Faculty of Kinesiology focusing on exercise for cancer survivors. Since March 2020, she has collaborated with the SPIN team as a professional educator for the SPIN-CHAT trial. Through this, she co-designed and delivered sessions on exercising at home during COVID-19 for people living with Scleroderma.




Delaney Duchek

Delaney Duchek

Kinesiotherapist, Exercise Specialist


Delaney Duchek completed her Bachelor of Arts and Science degree in Kinesiology and Psychology in 2019 from the University of Lethbridge in Alberta, Canada. She is currently a second-year Thesis-Based Master of Science student in the Health and Wellness Lab at the University of Calgary. She is completing her thesis in the Faculty of Kinesiology focusing on the differences between in-person and online exercise classes for cancer survivors. Since March 2020, she has collaborated with the SPIN team as a professional educator for the SPIN-CHAT trial. Through this, she co-designed and delivered sessions on exercising at home during COVID-19 for people living with Scleroderma.



Laura Bustamante

Laura Bustamante

Recreational Therapist


Laura is certified Recreational Therapist CTRS and holds a BA from Concordia University Specializing in Therapeutic Recreation. President and co-founder of the #icanbuticant awareness campaign to the barriers of leisure participation—Laura has a passion for therapeutic recreation and leisure advocacy. She had the pleasure of leading the “activity engagement” portion of the SPIN-CHAT 2020 research program as well as two educational sessions on “Staying active and engaged at home during the Covid-19 pandemic.” Laura’s specialization is working with individuals experiencing mental health challenges and adults living with physical disabilities and/or chronic illness. Laura loves being able to share her passion for leisure engagement and her personal interests of photography, baking, and the arts with the individuals she works with.