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Southern California Support Groups

Support Groups provide a forum to share feelings, concerns, information, as well as a place to offer peer support and encouragement. Solicitations or research projects are not conducted at support group meetings.

Support groups often feature speakers specializing in scleroderma or related topics. To find out information about upcoming speakers or meeting topics, please contact the support group leader or chapter office.

These schedules are subject to change. Before attending a group for the first time, please call to verify date and time. Groups are free of charge and open to everyone, including patients, caregivers, family and friends.

Click a link to jump below to view more information about one or our support groups:

Bakersfield/Kern County | Camarillo/Ventura County | Fountain Valley/Orange County | Culver City/Los Angeles |
Palm Desert
| Crescenta Valley/Pasadena | San Diego/Encinitas | San Diego/Mission Valley | Santa Barbara |
Sherman Oaks/San Fernando Valley
| Whittier/San Gabriel | San Gabriel Valley | Central Coast Inland Empire/San Bernardino South Bay

Support Group Announcements and Updates

Please visit our Facebook page for announcements, changes, alerts, etc.

Inland Empire/San Bernardino
Riverside Support Group
10am to 12pm 

Location: Arthritis Center of Riverside, 11725 Slate Ave. #100, Riverside, CA 92505

Contact: Lisa Parks
Phone: 951-288-0728

Contact: Christine Haddad
Phone: 909-754-5934


2018 Schedule: 

Nov 17 - 

Guest Speaker Tamara Noggle a licensed sales agent out of Ontario, with United HealthCare that will be educating us on understanding insurance plans, Medicare and supplemental insurance.

2019 Schedule: 

Jan 19
Mar 16
Summer Break
(August Scleroderma Patient Education Day at Arrowhead Regional Medical Center in San Bernardino)
Sep 21
Nov 16

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Central Coast 
Central Coast Support Group (Servicing Northern Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo County) 
Saturday11 am to 1 pm -Every other Month-
Location: Saint John's Lutheran Church

Contact: Jennifer Wood     
Phone: 805-878-6261
Contact: Pat Muran  ( Habla Español)     
Phone: 805-459-2362

2018 Schedule:
Jan 20
Mar 17 
May 19
Summer break
Sep 15
Nov 17



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Kern County Support Group

Meetings are on Saturdays, 10:00am to 12:00pm, Every other Month (no meeting in July)

Location: The Office of Timothy M. Osborn at: 2200 Truxtun Ave, Bakersfield, CA 93301

Contact: Stephen Elrod
Phone: 661-201-1759

2018 Schedule:
Jan 20
May 26
Jul 28
Sep 29
Nov 17 - Guest speakers Dr. Dan Furst "Pain In Scleroderma", Elaine Furst "Support from the Family"

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Ventura County Support Group
Saturday, 10:00am to 12:00pm. 
ACE Charter High School (at Camarillo Airport)
570 Airport Way
Camarillo, CA 93010

Contact: Robin D'Angelo
Phone: 805-701-9467


Contact: Arline Wetter
Phone: 805-987-8236


2018 Schedule:
Nov 10

2019 Schedule:
Jan 12

Mar 9
May 11
Sep 14
Nov 9

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Fountain Valley

Fountain Valley/Orange County Support Group 
Meetings are held on the SECOND Saturday of alternate months, 11:30am to 2pm, beginning in January.  Our meeting dates are listed below:
Location: Fountain Valley Regional Hospital, 17100 Euclid Ave, Fountain Valley.
We're meeting in the Saltzer Room.

Park on the Euclid Avenue side and enter under the big canopy marked “Emergency.” Ask the guard or receptionist for directions to the Saltzer Room.

Contact: Bonnie Copeland
Phone: 714-606- 6059


Contact: Roberta Hines
Phone: 562-745-8075

2018 Schedule:
Jan 13 - Speaker: Vince McCullough, Topic: Tai Chi, balance and Chinese medicine.
Mar 10 - Nutritional needs in SclerodermaSusan Nyanzi, Ph.D, 
May 12 -  Andrew Emmett, our new Executive Director and Tina Burger, our own Patient Advocate will discuss their goals for the Scleroderma Foundation of Southern California and solicit our feedback and comments.
Jul 14  - Medical Marijuana.  Kandice Hawes of NORML, the National Organization to Reform Marijuana Laws, and Kent Crowley, a Doctor of Pharmacy with postgraduate credentials in metabolism and functional medicine, will talk about marijuana’s  medical uses, delivery methods, and legal environment, with special emphasis on patients with Scleroderma and other autoimmune diseases. 
Sep 8 - What’s New? A Report from the National Scleroderma Conference in Philadelphia. 
Nov 10

Holiday Celebration TBA

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Palm Desert
Desert Area Support Group
We are looking for a new support group leader. If you are interested in leading a support group in this area, please contact Tina Burger No experience needed; we will help train and get things started. 

Contact: Tina Burger
Phone: 424-227-6475

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Pasadena/Crescenta Valley

Crescenta Valley Support Group                                                           
Saturdays, 10 am to 12pm                                                                     
USC Verdugo Hills Hospital, 1812 Verdugo Blvd, Glendale, CA, 91208         
Council Room C/D, 4th floor, behind the gift shop

The hospital is on a hill. Drive up hill from traffic light entrance, past the Emergency, go up hill a small way and turn
right into public parking lot. Enter from parking level. You will be on the 4 th floor. Go past reception. Room in corridor
on the right.

Contact: Alejandra Serrano
Phone: 213-245-7439

2018 Schedule: 
Jan 13
Mar 10
May 12
July 14
Sep 8
Nov 10

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San Diego Area
Encinitas Support Group

Saturday, 10:00am to 12:00pm, Every other month

Encinitas Community Center, 1140 Oakcrest Park Drive, Encinitas, 92024

Contact: Susan Okuno
Phone:  619-246-9393


Contact: Kelly Clemeshaw
Phone: 760-855-3449

2018 Schedule:

Feb 3
Apr 7
Jun 2
Aug 4
Oct 6

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Mission Valley Support Group

Saturday, 10:00am to 12:00pm, Every other month
Mission Valley Library, 2123 Fenton Parkway, San Diego, 92108

Contact: Susan Okuno
Phone: 619-246-9393

2018 Schedule:
Jan 6
Mar 3
May 5
(Jul 7 potluck in the park)
Sep 1
Nov 3
Dec 1 ??(Holiday potluck)

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Santa Barbara
Santa Barbara Support Group

Meetings are on Saturdays, 10:00am to 12pm
Beneflex Insurance Office, 101 W. Anapamu St, Santa Barbara, 93101 (corner of Anapamu and Chapala)

Contact: Elizabeth Duprey
Phone: 408-829-2718



Contact: Cindy Cattaneo                              
Phone:  (805)895-7384 


2018 Schedule:
Jan 6
Feb 3
Mar 3
Apr 7
Jun 2
Aug 4(Tentative)
Oct 6
Dec 1

San Fernando Valley Support Group

Sunday, 11:00am to 1pm, Every other Month (2nd Sunday)
Sherman Oaks Hospital, Doctors Conference Room, 4929 Van Nuys Blvd, Sherman Oaks 91403

Sherman Oaks

Map and directions
Contact: Kelly Ryan
Phone: 818-974-2428

2018 Schedule:
Nov 11 - Thanksgiving pot luck. Open discussion, and goal setting entering into the year 2019 along with our hand and finger mobility crafts. 
2019 Schedule:
Jan 13 - Video Screening: Dr. Maureen Mayes Responds to Your Frequently Asked Questions - Maureen D. Mates, M.D., M.P.H./ Followed By Open Discussion 
Mar 10
May 12 - Mother's Day Celebration- Pot Luck/ Open Talk - Topic or Theme / Finger & Hand Mobility Crafts 
Jul 14
Nov 14
Sep 8 - Video Screening: Dry Eyes, Dry Mouth: Sicca Syndrome versus Sjogren's Syndrome- Dr. Philip Clements, M.D., M.P.H. 
Nov 10 - Thanksgiving Celebration- Pot Luck/ Guest Speaker

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Whittier/San Gabriel Support Group
Presbyterian Intercommunity Hospital
12401 Washington Blvd.
Whittier, CA 90602
10:00am to 12pm
Contact: Penni LaVoot
Phone: 714-871-8580

2018 Schedule:
Jan 13 - Ginny Marrill, PhD will be discussing comping with Scleroderma.
Apr 14 - Andrew Emmett, Executive Director of Scleroderma Foundation of Southern California
Aug 11 - Janelle Smith, Dietician in Digestive Diseases, UCLA
Oct 13  - TBD
2019 Schedule:
Jan 12 - Medical Marijuana.  Kandice Hawes of NORML, the National Organization to Reform Marijuana Laws, and Kent Crowley, a Doctor of Pharmacy with postgraduate credentials in metabolism and functional medicine, will talk about marijuana’s  medical uses, delivery methods, and legal environment, with special emphasis on patients with Scleroderma and other autoimmune diseases. .
Apr 13 - TBD
Aug 10 - TBD
Oct 12  - TBD 

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San Gabriel Valley

San Gabriel Valley Peer Support Group
11am to 1pm at Villa Catrina, 251 N. Santa Anita Ave., Arcadia, 91006

Contact: Catherine Baca
Phone: 626-232-8449


2018 Schedule:

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South Bay 


Los Angeles/South Bay Support Group

11am-1pm at Saint Andrew's Episcopal Church
1432 Engracia Ave., Torracnce, CA


Valerie Goodman  310-890-2616 

2018 Schedule:
Feb 10
Apr 21 - 
Executive Director, Andrew Emmett and Patient Services Director, Tina Burger from the Scleroderma Foundation will present a wealth of information about the Foundation and where they want to go in terms of supporting patients and families going into 2018.
Jun 9
Aug 11
Oct 13 -O
ur Guest Speaker, "Renown Rheumatologist and Scleroderma Specialist" Dr. Daniel Furst will address 'GI disease and What to do About It' Elaine Furst will give a companion lecture on 'Support From the Family'  
Dec 8



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