Archive for the Cancer Support Category

The Drastic Increase In ‘Cancer Poverty’

The Drastic Increase In 'Cancer Poverty'

With my charity work increasing rapidly now, I have had so many conversations with both patients and health professionals about the issues during and after cancer treatment. It has shocked me how so many people are barely surviving financially once cancer enters their lives. Broken families, people living apart with dependent children, older people living on their own, and also regular people struggling with work and benefit issues. I knew things were bad but I hadn’t quite realised how bad they were. All the benefit advisors that I have met are absolutely full with people asking advice, with very little immediate help available. Yes there are some grants available but in many cases you have to almost jump through a hoop to get them. In my own case the cancer frightened

How Well Do We Communicate In The Cancer Sector?

How Well Do We Communicate In The Cancer Sector?

 This week I have had some incredibly diverse people contact me, but there has been a common theme so far, and that is communication. How to better engage with people about cancer? I am speaking at conferences and am visiting several organisations who all want to know how to improve their communication, to gain the type of followers they really need, to get their messages out to the right people. I think we are now beginning to learn that because we have followers, subscribers, likes etc  for our social media platforms, it does not necessarily guarantee proper engagement.  Unless you communicate in an interesting way, then why will people interact with you? This is something that I have always been aware of whilst talking and writing in the cancer market, and was brought home to me

Cancer Support At Grass Roots

Cancer Support At Grass Roots

Since the official launch of Your simPal, our free service for people affected by cancer I have been truly shocked in a positive way! We did lots of research and a soft launch about six months ago, to help us understand where, and how the demand would come. That also helped us deal with some of the unforeseen issues. But once the website was launched and the posters starting going out, organisations were busy contacting us about how they could help their patients. One of the biggest challenges that I have seen since spending so much time in the cancer sector, is a general lack of collaboration with organisations outside of your own. My general rule has been, the larger they are, the worse the problem is! We have designed the

“I’m Glad I Got Cancer.” Discuss!

"I'm Glad I Got Cancer." Discuss!

Firstly I would like to clarify that this is not a quote from me! It came up in a recent conversation I had with a fellow patient and someone I had met for the first time, so I was a little taken aback. I questioned the statement but the reply affirmed what had previously been said. A little further into the conversation I started to understand the point of view, but it is not certainly something I could ever say, despite the positive things that have happened since I became sick. One thing about cancer that is undoubtedly true, is that however we are touched by it, our life will have been changed forever. If we are not affected directly, it will be our loved ones, family, friends, colleagues etc.

Working Together Against Womb Cancer

Working Together Against Womb Cancer

I would like to thank Dr Emma Crosbie and Daloni Carlisle for writing this incredibly informative blog and I am delighted to be able to feature it in Gynaecological Cancer Awareness Month.  Just over two years ago, the Womb Cancer Alliance set out to find the top ten research priorities in womb cancer. This month they were published in the esteemed Gynaecologic Oncology Journal. We couldn’t be more proud – or more excited. It’s been a long road but that’s because this was a truly consultative exercise where clinicians, researchers and lay people worked hand in hand to identify and prioritise the questions that matter to all of us, collectively. Over 400 people took part generating 247 research questions. Deciding the top ten from such a long list was no easy task. Our

Cancer Discrimination

Cancer Discrimination

I wrote the below post last year, and week after week I am still being contacted by people concerned about cancer discrimination in the workplace. I’m not convinced that anything has improved. What do you think? This weeks post was prompted by a conversation I had with my bank recently. Having been with them for more than 10 years I wanted to ammend a few things to bring them up to date, but of course they don’t like change and I needed to have a phone call to review things! My bank know more about my money than I do, but insisted I go through every penny I spend and earn, plus detailed questioning on what I do for a living. Not being able to work after I got sick has been no issue to them up

It’s Good To Give….

It's Good To Give....

Since the soft launch of our free calls/txts/data service for people affected by cancer several months ago, we established quickly that it’s popularity demanded that it had it’s own platform. So we have been working on a new site, Twitter, Facebook etc, to enable people to see clearly what we do and how they can support us. When I was initially approached with this idea, there were two very definite requirements I had. The first one was that it wasn’t duplicating anything else that is being done already, and secondly that it fitted with the ‘transparency’ of my own ‘brand.’ There is very definitely no service out there that is doing what we are, and working in a ‘no strings attached way.’ As all referrals for the service come to me, I

Dying Of Embarrassment?

Dying Of Embarrassment?

 Having just returned from a very sunny family holiday, I can’t believe that we are nearly in September, which of course is Gynaecological Cancer Awareness Month. As you know I work across all tumour types, because many issues regarding cancer support are common. I am delighted to collaborate with many organisations involved with these cancers, and was shocked to find that lack of knowledge and embarrassment is so prevalent in this sector! There are many similarities with Bowel Cancer, Prostate Cancer etc. In this day and age we should no longer feel awkward talking about our intimate body parts to health professionals. As we all know many cancers can be treated successfully if caught early enough, which many of these are not. Much of my own work is about trying to bring many of the hidden

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