Articles

Gen had breast cancer and joined Cancer Coach once her treatment had ended

“Cancer Coach was a fantastic experience,” Gen’s story

Following treatment for triple negative breast cancer, Gen was in need of emotional support, which she found in Cancer Coach’s free peer support groups. “I’m a great believer in sharing one’s experiences – it definitely helps to talk to someone who has been through cancer and who therefore understands what you are feeling. “I would definitely recommend Cancer Coach. It was a fantastic experience and confirmed that my feelings were normal. All six of us in the group felt the same way.”

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one of the ten most common cancers in the UK

Understanding bladder cancer: symptoms, causes, and treatment

Learn about the common symptoms of bladder cancer, including blood in the urine, frequent urination, and painful urination. Discover the risk factors for bladder cancer and the various treatment options available

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Catherine Oinenon is a qualified Workplace Cancer Support Ambassador

“I don’t want anybody to be faced with a cancer diagnosis and feel alone.” Workplace Cancer Support Ambassador Catherine Oinenon

Catherine Oinenon is a qualified Workplace Cancer Support Ambassador. Her lived experience as a former cancer patient gives her a unique perspective into the needs of people facing a cancer diagnosis while working. She says the training was “invaluable”, giving the right tools to help people effectively.

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Sarita Yaganti is one of Cancer Support UK's trustees

Five questions about…the psychological and physical impact of cancer

In this interview, Cancer Support UK Trustee Sarita Yaganti talks about the need to optimise your mind and body before cancer treatment, as well as the importance of improving quality of life for people after cancer.

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Aneela joined Cancer Coach as she knew she needed to talk about her experiences

“Cancer Coach helped me feel less alone“ – Aneela’s story

Aneela was 48 years old when she was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2019, following

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Cancer Support UK is delighted to be working in partnership with The Wellbeing Project

Cancer Support UK partners with The Wellbeing Project

Cancer Support UK is delighted to announce its new partnership with global wellbeing consultancy The Wellbeing Project www.thewellbeingproject.co.uk , which has been instrumental in creating healthy workplace cultures for over 15 years. With almost one million people of working age diagnosed with cancer, organisations increasingly need to be prepared to support those impacted whether directly or indirectly, the new partnership will tackle increasing numbers of people needing support while facing cancer in the workplace.

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Sam first learnt about Cancer Support UK and Cancer Coach when she ordered a Cancer Kit.

“Cancer Coach changed my life for the better.” – Sam’s cancer story

Cancer Coach gave Sam the chance to talk to other women who had all been through similar cancer experiences and gave her the confidence to face life beyond cancer.

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Sally Gunnell OBE is the only woman ever to hold four major track titles concurrently – Olympic, World, European and Commonwealth. Pictured here, Gunnell is holding the gold medal she won for her 400m hurdles triumph at the 1992 Olympic Games in Barcelona

Sally Gunnell OBE champions national cancer charity Cancer Support UK

Olympic Champion and Health and Wellbeing advocate, Sally Gunnell OBE has announced that she will be supporting national cancer charity Cancer Support UK. Gunnell’s work with Cancer Support UK will focus on helping the charity achieve its mission to help those impacted by cancer in the workplace.

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The mischievous antics of Nancy's cats are a welcome distraction from the stress of everyday life

You can’t beat cuddles with a cat as a way of managing anxiety, says Nancy Priston

Cats are a wonderful stress reliever says Cancer Support UK’s Health Ambassador Nancy Priston, who’s six mischievous provide a welcome distraction from other life events, which might otherwise stress her out.

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"We all had a laugh while sharing our feelings, which is so important." Ian, Cancer Coach participant

“Cancer Coach helped me take back control of my life.” – Ian’s cancer story

Cancer Coach provided the right level of post treatment support for Ian, who benefited from sharing his cancer experience with other cancer patients.

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Kate, right, is a breast cancer survivor who took part in our 2022 and 2023 Sh'bamathon

“Raising awareness of this amazing charity helps keep me going.” Kate, breast cancer survivor

“I would have welcomed the support that Cancer Support UK can provide, when I was diagnosed 16 years ago,” says breast cancer survivor Kate. “I’ve done the Sh’bamathon twice now to raise awareness and money for this amazing charity.”

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Emily Jenkins founder of Move Dance Feel

Five questions…about the benefits of dance for people affected by cancer

Emily Jenkins, the founder and director of Move, Dance Feel, talks about the extraordinary benefits of dance for women living with and beyond cancer, and also for those supporting someone with cancer.

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Dani Binnington

Five questions…about cancer and the menopause

Dani Binnington, founder of Healthy Whole Me and Menopause and Cancer, talks about the devastating effects of the menopause on female cancer patients.

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Thanks to Cancer Coach, Melanie discovered she was not alone in the emotions she was experiencing

“Cancer Coach allowed me to grieve for my previous self.” Melanie’s story

Melanie was diagnosed with stage 3 breast cancer in March 2018 . She says, “The support I received through Cancer Coach also prompted me to think about expectations of myself after treatment and how I was putting a lot of pressure on myself to be “normal” again.”

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Left, Olly Johnson (TDLTC Chairman), right Mark Guymer CEO Cancer Support UK

Thames Ditton Lawn Tennis Club partners with Cancer Support UK

Thames Ditton Lawn Tennis Club is delighted to announce that its chosen charity for the next two years is national cancer charity Cancer Support UK.

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Kristie Scott is a professional will writer based in Dorset

“The Workplace Cancer Support Ambassador training was amazing.” Kristie Scott’s story

Kristie Scott completed Cancer Support UK’s Workplace Cancer Support Ambassador training and now feels more confident in having conversations with clients facing a cancer diagnosis

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Cancer has changed Natalie's life, not just physically, but financially and emotionally, too

“The Cancer Coach sessions were like a breath of fresh air.” – Natalie’s cancer story

“Cancer is a beast with many different heads, which can catch you off guard, but Cancer Coach has equipped me with tools and strategies to help me face my fears when they surface unexpectedly. I’ve also met some fabulous ladies who understand the struggles and support each other. Knowing others who understand the complex nature of cancer is very reassuring and I now feel less alone. 

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Bruce treasures Johnny, his bear, and takes him to all his hospital appointments

“Johnny, the bear, comes with us to all Bruce’s gruelling treatments.” – Bruce’s Cuddles story

Throughout Bruce’s tough cancer journey, Johnny the warmable teddy has kept him company, providing cuddles and comfort in hospital. “Bruce treasures Johnny and will be taking him with us when we go in for eight weeks in isolation in Leeds,” says Bruce’s mum Stephanie.

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Bubbles provide ideal entertainment when you are stuck in hospital

“He loved receiving something that was for just him alone.” – Samuel’s Kids’ Kit story

The arrival of a Kid’s Kit made such a difference to Samuel, restoring his smile and giving him a much-needed boost after he was diagnosed with neuroblastoma. He loved the games inside the Kit, which mean he can have fun when he’s in hospital.

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Cancer Support UK is holding it's second annual Sh'bamathon fundraiser

Move to the groove – Sh’bamathon dance fundraiser returns to Nuffield Health, Surbiton

Life is definitely better when you dance – which is why Cancer Support UK is repeating it’s most popular fundraising event, the Sh’bamathon.

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A VW Passat estate car transformed into a Star Wars X-wing starfighter

Star Wars starfighter banger goes all out to support Cancer Support UK at Benidorm or Bust rally

A VW Passat Estate car has been transformed into a spectacular Star Wars themed X-wing starfighter by four enthusiasts from Derbyshire to raise money for Cancer Support UK.

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Cancer Support UK is partnering with The Dorset Cancer Care Foundation

Cancer Support UK partners with Dorset Cancer Care Foundation

Stress and poor mental health is one of the biggest challenges facing cancer patients post treatment. This Stress Awareness Month (1-30 April 2023), National cancer charity Cancer Support UK is announcing its ongoing partnership with The Dorset Cancer Care Foundation (DCCF) to increase awareness of the financial and emotional support available to cancer patients in Dorset.

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(Left to right) Paul Vose (YCC Treasurer), Jill Long( YCC Engagement & Communications Officer), Emma Kennedy-Cox (Cancer Support UK Trust Manager) and Louise Escott (YCC trustee) kneeling, Ric Myers (YCC Cancer Champion and prospective trustee), Dr Stewart Manning (YCC Chair), Richard Midgley (YCC trustee, David Blunt (YCC trustee)

Cancer Support UK partners with Yorkshire Cancer Community to benefit people affected by a cancer diagnosis

Cancer Support UK has formed a new collaborative partnership with the Yorkshire Cancer Community, for the benefit of people in Yorkshire affected by cancer.

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Fear of cancer recurrence is a common emotion

Trigger points – the fear of cancer recurrence

As human beings, we like certainties, but with cancer there are no guarantees that our cancer won’t come back. Read our tips on how to cope.

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Exercise is good for your mental health and wellbeing

Five questions…about health and fitness

In this new series, we will be asking a wide range of experts, five questions, in order to share useful insight and tips with you. This month, in his interview with Dr Nancy Priston, Cancer Support UK’s CEO, Mark Guymer, learns how to successfully lose weight and incorporate exercise into your life.

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Reading books can provide a much needed respite from the trauma of a cancer diagnosis

World Book Day 2023 – The benefits of bibliography for cancer patients

On World Book Day (2 March) what better way of highlighting the benefits of reading for people living with and beyond cancer, than sharing the recommendations of Cancer Support UK’s Cancer Coach participants, volunteers and team members.

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Helen with one of her beautiful cats

“Cancer Support UK’s chemo kit has you covered.” Helen’s breast cancer experience

Helen, 45, was diagnosed with breast cancer in December 2021 and says that without doubt, early detection of her cancer saved her life. “I am also lucky to be surrounded by the most supportive family and friends. As I sat in the consultation room trying to take in what I had just been told, I had no idea just how much my world was going to change. Helen puts her humour and positivity to good use on social media, by sharing her cancer journey in the hope that it will inspire others.

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We've pledged our support

Cancer Support UK has signed the #WorkingWithCancer pledge

Cancer Support UK has joined a growing numbers of companies who have taken the #workingwithcancer pledge to support people with cancer in the workplace. CEO Mark Guymer says: “Our workplace cancer support courses can give every type of organisation the knowledge, tools and confidence to give colleagues impacted by cancer the right kind of emotional assistance.”

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Julia after treatment

“Cancer Coach showed me that I wasn’t alone in my cancer journey.” – Julia’s story

“Cancer Coach not only helped me deal with the aftermath of the many treatments, it also showed me that I wasn’t alone in all this. Friends and family are great, but they might not have had cancer. The other people in the Cancer Coach support group all had cancer and we felt as though we were connected. We laughed and cried and supported each other.

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Nordic walking is especially good for improving strength and flexibility after breast surgery

How Nordic walking helped my recovery after cancer

Nordic walking helped Catherine deal with the physical effects of Lymphoedema following surgery and treatment for breast cancer. It boosted her mental health, too. “Striding out with the poles felt wonderfully empowering, especially after recently feeling so weak and vulnerable.”

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Teenage Cancer Trust Cardiff message of thanks

Thank you for helping over 1,500 children with cancer at Christmas

We are delighted to say that thanks to your amazing donations our Cuddles for Christmas appeal and our new Bag of Smiles campaign exceeded their targets.

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Cancer Support UK is committed to its new three year vision

Cancer Support UK announces new three year vision

We believe in a future world where those impacted by cancer do not need to suffer needlessly and we will play our part to achieve this by delivering three important commitments by 2025.

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Sharing the experience of cold water immersion can be great fun and a lovely way to meet new friends - Photo credit: Milly Haines

The benefits of cold water swimming by Jane Woods, Cancer Coach volunteer

Jane Woods’ love of cold water swimming started with a quick dip one Christmas day several years ago in Swanage. “I decided to swim once a month for a year, then once a week. It has become an almost daily habit, which helps lift my mood and keeps anxiety at bay.”

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"There’s a time and a place for worry and it doesn’t have to consume my thoughts every day." - Claire, Cancer Coach participant

“I have made five new friends through Cancer Coach.” – Claire’s story

“If I find myself worrying too much now, I read my workbook and the notes I made. This reminds me that I can worry less and reassures me that worrying is normal. However, there’s a time and a place for worry and it doesn’t have to consume my thoughts every day.” Claire recommends joining Cancer Coach, as the course really helped her.

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Keeping fit at Christmas

How to manage food and fitness for a happy healthy Christmas

The festive season is well underway now with the usual rounds of parties, drinks and over indulging. It can be pretty overwhelming and often when you are feeling isolated or depressed, the prospect of the next few weeks can be quite scary. Life is about finding the right balance and it certainly doesn’t hurt to have a little plan in place to help you get as much enjoyment as possible. So here are a few ideas from Dr Nancy Priston, our Health Ambassador, to help keep you on track.

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Give yourself space to rest and recover

How to survive Christmas – tips from our Cancer Coach participants

We asked our Cancer Coach participants to share their survival tips for the festive season. From focusing on spending time with family and friends to treating yourself to a facial, their advice comes from first-hand experience on how to make the most of this special time of year without being overwhelmed.

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Workplace cancer support training courses which can be accessed remotely

How to manage a workplace conversation about cancer

Knowing how to communicate productively yet sensitively with colleagues in your workplace who are affected by cancer is essential. Through our Cancer Coach work, we’ve learnt there are many helpful things to say and do when someone is affected by cancer. It’s important to understand what kind of language and what type of conversation is likely to encourage them to get across what they need to say, while feeling comfortable.

Here are some useful approaches to help you manage conversations about cancer. Remember there is no such thing as a perfect script – the main aim is to be aware of the pressures, which people affected by cancer face.

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Christmas can be a mixture of anxiety and joy

The meaning of Christmas…when you’re facing cancer

For people living with and beyond cancer, the festive period can be a time of anxiety as well as joy. Four of our Cancer Coach participants talk about their cancer experiences at Christmas and how they faced up to a different future with the support and friendship of their fellow group members.

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Finnie in hospital

“Our son’s cancer diagnosis has changed us as a family,” – Finnie’s Kids’ Kit story

Finnie’s cancer diagnosis was the news that no family should ever have to face. He has endured three years of intense and gruelling treatment, as well as separation from his family. “Childhood cancer changes a family forever, but the support of charities like Cancer Support UK, who gave Finnie a Kid’s Kit, have helped to brighten Finnie’s hospital stays,” says his mum Kellie.

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“I just wanted to say how wonderful the Comfort Kit is."

“I absolutely love everything in the Comfort Kit.” – Nasreen’s story

“When I first received my cancer diagnosis I was absolutely broken and in shock. But after my operation I thought I’m going to fight this and not let it take over my life.” Nasreen has been through surgery and gruelling treatment, but found the Comfort Kit a great help.

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Michael, Cancer Coach participant

“When treatment finished I felt very alone and scared” – Michael’s Cancer Coach story

Michael felt very alone and scared once his cancer treatment had finished. He joined Cancer Support UK’s Cancer Coach programme and found the online meetings helpful. “It was therapeutic to hear other people’s cancer journey stories and to be able to share mine.”

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The cost of living crisis’ is affecting so many people in different ways

Practical solutions for cancer patients facing emotional and economic challenges – by Mark Guymer

As the cost of living escalates, CEO Mark Guymer believes that it’s more important than ever to support people living beyond cancer, giving them the confidence to take control of their recovery.

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Nancy Priston and Mark Guymer Cancer Support UK CEO

‘Dim the lights’ to reach your goals – Health and fitness blog by Dr Nancy Priston

In her new blog series for Cancer Support UK, our new Health and Fitness Ambassador, Nancy Priston, aims to help you reframe your thinking about your levels of activity and healthy living generally. The strategies Nancy uses are designed to support your progress and, most importantly, to help you feel better while doing it.

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Thumbs up from Mondelēz UK employees

Mondelēz UK employees give Cancer Support Ambassador training a big thumbs up

Cancer Support UK was delighted to receive positive feedback from Mondelēz UK employees who had received Cancer Support Ambassador training.

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Healthcare professional with patient

Cancer Coach online referral form now available for healthcare professionals

If you are a healthcare professional and would like to refer someone to Cancer Coach, you can do so online, through the Cancer Support UK website.

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Nancy Priston Cancer Support UK's new Health Ambassador

Fitness expert Nancy Priston to become Health Ambassador for Cancer Support UK

Nancy Priston will work with Cancer Support UK by sharing her expertise through a new digital health column, which will be aimed at supporting those who have received a cancer diagnosis and who are interested in becoming healthier and fitter.

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Jo Hall

“Your Chemo Kit gave me joy, excitement and the knowledge that I wasn’t alone.” – Jo’s story

The kit provided me with the knowledge that I wasn’t alone. It told me that people were there for me during this awful time and gave me joy and excitement.

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Hilda Chiwanza

“I loved everything about Cancer Coach. It’s a great service.” – Hilda’s story

Cancer Coach proved a life changing experience for Hilda. “I loved everything about Cancer Coach. It’s a great service and I found it so useful. I really looked forward to my Monday sessions and talking with people who understood me.

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Cancer Support Ambassador Certificate of attendance

Cancer Support Ambassador Autumn training course dates

Book a place on Cancer Support UK’s Cancer Support Ambassador Autumn training courses, which cover the physical and emotional side effects of both cancer and cancer treatments. The course content also contains tools and strategies to equip workplace Cancer Support Ambassadors with key skills to have supportive conversations with individuals experiencing emotional turmoil due to or caused by the effects of cancer.

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HM Queen Elizabeth II

Mark Guymer CEO, reflects on the legacy of “One of the world’s greatest supporters of charities”

“Since the announcement of Her Majesty’s death, I have read and listened to many different responses,” says CEO Mark Guymer. One commentator resonated deeply with me when they said, “It’s not about learning to live without someone, it’s about learning to live with the love they have left behind.” 

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Tilly with her Cancer Support UK bunny

“Your amazing Kids’ Kit helped lift my daughter’s spirits” – Tilly’s cancer story

“We try to take everything a day at a time. Our family has been severely impacted through the experience, but we are completely united in supporting Tilly as she tries to resume normal – or as close to normal living as possible.”

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Charlene, Cancer Coach facilitator

Cancer Coach tips – Charlene’s relaxation exercise

Cancer Coach facilitator Charlene uses a simple but highly effective breathing exercise to help her group cope with anxiety following cancer treatment.

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Emma crop resize 3

Meet Emma Kennedy-Cox, Trust Fundraising Manager

Our Trust Fundraising Manager Emma is passionate about helping people with cancer. Emma excels at bringing Cancer Support UK’s work to life, sharing our vision with funders in order to engage them and ultimately gain vital funding to ensure we can continue to support people affected by cancer.

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Cancer Support Ambassador Certificate of attendance

Cancer Support UK launches new course to train Cancer Support Ambassadors in the workplace

The impact that a cancer diagnosis can have on an individual’s mental health is significant, yet 85% of employees with a cancer diagnosis want to carry on working. This highlights a need for effective support strategies to be put in place by businesses to help colleagues living with cancer. Cancer Support UK has developed a bespoke Cancer Support Ambassador Training programme to train businesses to support employees living with cancer.

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Ruth Osman

A Cancer Kit gave Ruth a big morale boost at a low point in her life – Ruth’s Cancer Kit story

“It’s really important that you are supported both during and after treatment has finished. Because that is the point where everything stops and you’re left wondering what’s going to happen next. The Cancer Kit Ruth received as a result of your donations gave her a big morale boost when she was feeling very low.

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Lynne Ellis, Cancer Coach participant

“Cancer Coach helped me understand my emotional turmoil” – Lynne’s Cancer Coach story

Following treatment for breast cancer, Lynne turned to Cancer Coach for help. She used the course’s strategies and peer support to move forward with her life. “The sessions were very relaxed. The Cancer Coach facilitator was so welcoming and an amazing listener – very empathetic to everyone in the group, particularly during emotional conversations.

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Charlotte Poulter Head of Service

Charlotte Poulter promoted to Head of Service

Cancer Support UK’s Cancer Coach Manager Charlotte Poulter has received a well deserved promotion and is now Head of Service. Charlotte’s hard work has ensured the success of the Cancer Coach service, building positive working relationships with participants, volunteers, partners, stakeholders and the voluntary sector.

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Jos McLaren

“My Chemo Kit was such a generous, thoughtful and supportive gift” – Jos’ story

Former children’s cancer nurse Jos McLaren, 43, was diagnosed with stage 2 breast cancer during lockdown. Five months later she was shocked to learn that the cancer had spread to her spine, changing her diagnosis to stage 4 with a terminal prognosis. Having completed chemotherapy, she now receives monoclonal antibody injections to prevent the cancer from spreading any further. Jos’ experience inspired her to compose and record a song to give hope to other cancer patients.

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Jane Woods Cancer Coach volunteer

“Cancer Coach enables me to give something back and make a difference.” – Jane’s Cancer Coach story

Jane is one of Cancer Support UK’s amazing Cancer Coach volunteers. An experienced coach, she lives in Dorset and facilitates our Cancer Coach courses remotely for the benefit of people across the UK who have completed their cancer treatment.

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Olivia Gray Head of Learning and Development

Meet Olivia Gray, Head of Learning and Development

We’d like to introduce you to Olivia, who has written a blog about her role at Cancer Support UK, helping organisations manage conversations about cancer with colleagues and customers. She ensures that organisations are given the right tools to communicate about cancer, whether it’s through an individually tailored workshop or via an online e-learning module.

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John Lawrence

“It’s the most extraordinary gift. I have my life back again.” – John Lawrence story update

John was diagnosed with throat cancer in 2021 and given the worst possible news – that the tumour in his throat was beyond treatment. In the midst of chemotherapy, he received a Chemo Kit, made possible by our generous supporters. It was the boost he so desperately needed. Best of all, his terminal journey took an unexpected turn and he’s now in remission.

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We are members of Cancer52

Cancer Support UK joins Cancer52

Cancer Support UK is now a member of Cancer52, an umbrella charity, which represents over 100 charities and patient organisations, who are united by their vision of seeing a better future for everyone affected by the rare and less common cancers.

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Karen

“My Cancer Kit was a little piece of heaven, which left me feeling supported.” – Karen’s Cancer Kit story

Despite a stage 3 bowel cancer diagnosis and an Acoustic Neuroma (low grade brain tumour), Karen, 51, has refused to be defined by her cancer and has forged a new life for herself.

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Shbam

Sh’bamathon for Cancer Support UK at Nuffield Health, Surbiton

Help support Cancer Support UK by taking part in a fun packed Sh’bamathon from 1pm to 4pm on Sunday 3 July at Nuffield Heath Surbiton, Surrey.

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Cancer Support UK's CEO Mark Guymer

The power of peer support – my Cancer Coach experience – by Mark Guymer CEO

Cancer Support UK’s new CEO, Mark Guymer, writes about his experience as an observer on our Cancer Coach course, which offers peer support to people post cancer treatment.

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Anne Clark

“All the other participants in my group were very welcoming, friendly and open, even though we were all strangers to each other.” – Anne’s Cancer Coach story

“The group’s coach was very welcoming, as were all the other participants in my group. Even though we were all strangers to each other, we had all gone through a similar experience. Everyone was very friendly and open.

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Samantha Nicholas

 “Being able to talk with other people who had similar experiences to me was invaluable.”   Samantha’s Cancer Coach story

“I absolutely loved the group and got a lot out of it. I have stayed in contact with two ladies who were on the course with me. We now have a WhatsApp group to keep in touch regularly, which really helps.

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Corporate cancer awareness training

Cancer Support UK launches cancer awareness corporate training workshops

The ongoing implications of COVID-19 has created increased awareness among employers of their responsibility to support employees’ health and wellbeing, including cancer related challenges. As leading providers of practical and emotional support for people living with cancer, Cancer Support UK has developed a series of workshops to help employers communicate about cancer in the workplace.

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Tara

“Cancer Coach sessions healed my soul and brought me back to the person I was before the cancer. To an even better version of me.” Tara’s Cancer Coach story

Tara’s surgery and treatment for her breast cancer took place during lockdown, which meant no-one was allowed to attend appointments with her. Afterwards, she felt frustrated and sad, as friends and family were unable to understand what she was going through. Luckily she found the support of Cancer Coach and has never looked back.

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Frank Talton

“It was helpful to discover that my post cancer worries were experienced by other men – none of us were alone in our fears.” Frank’s Cancer Coach story

Frank’s cancer journey has involved not only overcoming his own bowel cancer, but also coming to terms with close family’s experience with the disease. Cancer Coach has helped Frank move forwards and face the future positively.

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Lorraine Love

“Having someone to listen to me and provide guidance helped me come to terms with my cancer experience.” – Lorraine’s story

“Having someone to listen to me and provide guidance was essential in helping me come to terms with everything. I thank Cancer UK for being there for me through this journey. You have made a huge difference.

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Thank you dog

Share your payday happiness by making a regular donation to Cancer Support UK through Payroll Giving

In these uncertain times UK charities need help now, more than ever. Regular donations through Payroll Giving are one of the easiest ways to support Cancer Support UK.

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Anna James

In memory of Anna James

It is with deep sadness that we inform you about the passing of Anna James, Cancer Support UK’s former Head of Service, who was a highly valued and much respected staff member from 2019 to 2021.

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Tiernan with Cuddles the bear

‘Cuddles’ the bear delivers bedtime warmth to Tiernan

A surprise Easter visitor to the Royal Victoria Hospital in Belfast, in the shape of a cuddly warmable ted, lends a comforting paw to three year old cancer patient Tiernan

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Cancer Coach participant Hazel

Before I started my Cancer Coach course l felt isolated – Hazel’s story

“Through Cancer Coach I met other women with similar experiences to myself. We were all able to have a good laugh together, despite having different kinds of outcomes.”

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Linda, Cancer Coach participant

“The first session was extremely emotional for all of us. I don’t think you realise how much you keep pent up inside.” – Linda C’s story

“If you have an opportunity to join Cancer Coach, my message is do it. Because afterwards you will feel that a load has been taken off your shoulders.” Linda, 64, who has endured and overcome several types of cancer.

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Sabine Raza Khan

“My Cancer Coach was an absolute delight and, for the first time in a long while, I felt better.” – Sabine’s story

“Each session gave me strength and reason to carry on. The fact that we could discuss sensitive issues with each other, without being judged, felt empowering. The whole atmosphere was relaxed, empathetic and helpful, as we all supported and learned from each other.

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Young woman in a video meeting

“The impact of cancer as it enters your life is like a tsunami” – Sumitra’s story

Seven years ago Sumitra was diagnosed with triple-negative breast cancer. She is now a volunteer with Cancer Support UK’s Cancer Coach programme and uses her experience to help people who have completed their physical cancer treatment. “Everyone’s journey is unique and there is no normality – simply the new normal from having cancer.”

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Esmé in hospital

“The Kids Kit that Esmé received from Cancer Support UK was a ray of sunshine.” – Esme’s story

It was during the most difficult period of her treatment, when she was spending days and nights in hospital, that Esmé received her Kids’ Kit.
According to her mum, Wendy, it put a huge smile on Esme’s face, which gave the rest of the family a positive boost:

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Lucy Cancer Coach participant

“It was absolutely amazing. Other people who have gone through the same things know how you feel.” – Lucy’s story

“I wouldn’t hesitate to do it again because it’s made such a difference. I’d recommend Cancer Coach to anybody who is feeling a bit isolated with their situation and wants to talk about it. You don’t always want to feel like a burden to your family and friends who haven’t had cancer – sometimes they don’t really understand.”

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Jo Wilkes Cancer Coach Participant

“Being able to talk to others who really understood was life changing” – Jo Wilkes’ story

“The group I was part of were women of similar ages and by the end of the first session, I felt the loneliness lift. They had the same fears, they struggled with the same feelings, they had the same anger and we talked this through honestly and openly. The relief to hear others had the same thoughts was therapeutic and I looked forward to every session after that.”

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Gemma Holding CEO

Gemma Holding to leave Cancer Support UK after six years as CEO

Cancer Support UK Chief Executive Gemma Holding has announced that she will leave the charity at the end of February 2022.

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Julie Gray - Cancer Coach participant

“It felt like there was nothing left. Then I found Cancer Coach.” – Julie G’s story

“I felt that once you finished treatment that was it, nothing, zero, on your own to figure it out. Thankfully Cancer Support UK was available.”

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Sayuri with Cutie the bear

Cuddles with her teds mean so much to Sayuri

Sayuri’s mum, Ichika, believes that Sayuri’s soft toys are not just for comfort and fun: “She plays hospital with them, which helps her process her experiences.

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John Lawrence Chemo Kit recipient

“I can’t thank Cancer Support UK enough” – John’s story

“I think that sometimes it’s the little things that make all the difference and the Chemo Kit has definitely done that. By championing such a great initiative, I hope that it will benefit others going through a similar experience to myself or even just those fighting the varying degrees of different cancers.”

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Imelda cancer kit recipient

“My Chemo Kit made me feel that somebody cared” – Imelda’s story

“It was filled with lots of useful things that really made a difference. It can be quite isolating when you’re diagnosed because suddenly it feels like it’s just you, but knowing there was support out there really helped and made me feel that somebody cared.”

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Chemo Kit

Chemo Kit to the rescue

When someone has been diagnosed with cancer, there is an overwhelming amount of information to absorb and process in what can seem a very short window of time. When treatment such as chemotherapy starts, there are many things you need to think of in terms of your own physical comfort.

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Vicky, Cancer Coach participant wearing a wig

“I found Cancer Coach on the web and thought this is perfect for me.” – Vicky PD’s story

“That weekly session was so helpful, talking to strangers who became new friends, who knew exactly what I was going through, was brilliant. We cried and laughed and came out the other side with good coping skills and tools to help us deal with any issues that may arise.”

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Christmas

Cancer Coach tips for coping at Christmas

Whether you are still receiving treatment for cancer or have completed treatment and are facing

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Audrey with her Cancer Support UK Warmie bear

Audrey’s Christmas bear is a firm favourite

“Audrey’s Warmies teddy bear has brought her much needed comfort when she is feeling a bit down or just tired. She particularly likes that she can warm it up in the microwave to give him a cuddle. The scent is amazing and very calming too.”

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Cancer patient Link Simpson with his Cancer Support UK Warmies bear

A cuddly bear helps Link face Christmas in hospital

Link loves his new bear from Cancer Support UK, which can be warmed up to help soothe and comfort him. The soft and cuddly ted provides stress and anxiety relief and is perfectly weighted to provide a calming and positive sensory experience.

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Jake with Teddy Thank You

Bear hugs for Jake when he needs them most

“Jake was so excited when he unwrapped Charlie – he wrapped him up in his blanket straightaway. He has already come in very useful when Jake had a cold. We heated Charlie up and popped him into bed beside him.”

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Mara loves her bear from Cancer Support UK

It’s love at first sight when Mara meets a special bear

“Mara is completely in love with Charlie Bear and can’t stop stroking him. Recently she’s been struggling to sleep so his gorgeous lavender scent is a very welcome addition to her bed. Thank you to Cancer Support UK, there’s very little that beats seeing that smile!”

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Ormani

“Omarni loves his teddy as it’s so soft and cuddly” – Omarni’s story

“The cuddly toy provided by Cancer Support UK last Christmas is wonderful. Omarni loves his teddy as it’s so soft and cuddly. It can be heated in a microwave, so we use it throughout autumn and winter for lovely warming snuggles.”

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Jodie

“Courage and smiles throughout her treatment.” – Jodie’s story

“Jodie is four months into her maintenance treatment stage, which continues until February 2023. Every one in four months we visit John Radcliffe hospital where she has a lumbar puncture, she’s so brave  and takes it all in her stride.” Cancer Support UK sent Jodie a Warmies bear to say well done for being so brave.

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Martin Bird Cancer Coach volunteer

“It’s a mystery to me why more men don’t take the opportunity to talk.” Martin Bird’s blog

“Cancer Coach helped me come to terms with my issues and to be confident about the rest of my life. I thought maybe I could use my experience to help others.”

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Ian Clarke Cancer Coach participant

“I would recommend Cancer Coach support groups to anyone who wants to be helped with their recovery.” – Ian’s story

“Although I am naturally an optimist, the programme helped me feel more confident about the future. It provided me with a good opportunity to review my cancer journey.”

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Bella

“Thank you so much for my Easter cuddles.” – Bella’s Story

“We are very grateful for Cancer UK’s support in bringing a smile to Bella’s face and helping her to forget what she is going through.”

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Dorothy Cancer Coach volunteer

“We provide techniques that people can take away and try for themselves.” – Dorothy’s Cancer Coach volunteer story

“We provide a safe space where people can reflect, open up, share their feelings and build empathy with others. It’s great to see that people can connect with one another.”

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Sharon Cancer Coach participant

Sharon’s Cancer Coach Story

“I feel like I’ve met friends for life through Cancer Coach support group sessions and I still have that support that I was lacking before I discovered this charity.”

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Lucy’s Cancer Coach Story

Lucy’s Cancer Coach Story     Lucy was diagnosed with a melanoma in her eye

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Louise’s Cancer Coach Story

Louise’s Cancer Coach Story     Louise, 55, was diagnosed with breast and lymph node

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Diane Lee

“Cancer Coach is really useful. People understand your situation more than family and friends.” – Diane’s story

“Following treatment I felt very abandoned. But in Cancer Coach, I never felt like I was being bumped out of the way – people were really considerate and listened to my experiences.”

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Beth Cancer Coach participant

“Physically, emotionally, mentally, cancer changes you beyond measure.” – Beth’s story

“It’s impossible to understand adapting back to life post-treatment unless you’ve been through it. Physically, emotionally, mentally, cancer changes you beyond measure. Our Cancer Coach group has stayed in touch. We have an incredible bond.”

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Supporting someone with cancer

Five ways to support someone living with cancer

As friends and family, it can sometimes be hard to know how to best care for loved ones as they undergo treatment. Here are some tips on how you can provide emotional and practical support.

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Vote and share – we are looking for funding in the Aviva Community Fund

We have applied for the Aviva Community Fund which allows small charities to gain access

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CSUK in the news!

Chief executive Gemma Holding said: “Inequalities in health and well-being provision across the UK mean that some patients – based on where they live – have better access to, and receive higher quality health care than others”. Find out more about CSUK with links to news articles about us.

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Kids Cancer Kit gets the thumbs up from Isla

Cancer Support UK’s Kids Cancer Kit is a hit with seven-year-old Isla from Northamptonshire. Isla,

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Help provide emotional support with a pledge to the Big Give

Cancer Support UK is taking part in the UK’s biggest match funding campaign with the

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Linda skydives in memory of her dad Bobby, for CSUK

Linda Brack tells us her story of why she skydived for Cancer Support UK on

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Jonny and Dan’s skydive raises £1,135 for Cancer Support UK

Two of our supporters, Jonny and Dan, recently completed skydives for us and raised an

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Cancer Support UK Teams Up With Clothes Aid

Cancer Support UK is delighted to announce a new commercial partnership with Clothes Aid, the

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Cancer Support UK celebrates with the best in the sector

Last night the Cancer Support UK team had the pleasure of attending the annual Charity

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Cancer Support UK announced as double Charity Times Awards finalist

Cancer Support UK has been is shortlisted for two awards at the prestigious Charity Times

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Cancer Support UK launches Unique New Service

Cancer Support UK is delighted to launch a new service this month, which isn’t currently

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CEO of Cancer Support UK wins ACEVO Award

We are delighted that our CEO, Gemma Holding, has received a prestigious Judges Recognition Award 2016 from ACEVO for ‘brave and inspirational leadership’. ACEVO (Association of Chief Executives of Voluntary Organisations) represents the UK’s largest network for charity and social enterprise leaders.

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