Double the support for cancer patients – (left to right) DCCF Charity Administrator Penelope Saunders, Richenda Oldham, Head of Communications for Cancer Support UK and Jazmine White, the Dorset Cancer Care Foundation’s Charity Manager.
DCCF teams up with national charity to offer patients even more support
The Dorset Cancer Care Foundation (DCCF) is partnering with the national charity Cancer Support UK to raise awareness of the financial and emotional support available to the county’s cancer patients.
The DCCF was founded by three local nurses in 2012 to help Dorset families struggling financially because of a cancer diagnosis.
Through fundraising and events the charity has since donated over £646k to help cancer patients pay for specialist equipment, travel to and from hospital, childcare during treatment and everyday living costs.
The national charity Cancer Support UK offers a range of emotional and practical support services and training for individuals and businesses.
Its peer support group programme Cancer Coach has been developed by cancer patients and is available free to individuals who have completed their cancer treatment.
And Workplace Cancer Support Training is designed and delivered by people who have experienced cancer themselves to help people support their work colleagues.
Cancer Support UK is currently training the Dorset Cancer Care Foundation’s staff and volunteers in its programmes and has also held introductory sessions in its new workshop, Cancer Support Ambassadors, which gives individuals within organisations the tools, strategies and knowledge to provide emotional support to colleagues affected by cancer.
DCCF Charity Administrator Penelope Saunders said: “As someone who has both survived cancer and now talks each day to Dorset people who are struggling under a cancer diagnosis, I can see the huge benefits of Cancer Support UK’s programmes.
“The people who come to us for help are often suffering almost unbearable financial and emotional stress. Some are undergoing treatment, some have recently finished. And many feel lost and unsure of where to turn next for support and guidance.
“Having helped them through their DCCF grant application, I will be able to use my Cancer Support UK training to signpost them to the wide range of other help available to them. And my Cancer Support Ambassador training will also help me to support my charity colleagues and fundraisers who are experiencing cancer too.”
Cancer Support UK is committed to providing 10,000 Cancer Coach places within the next three years. This will ensure that the 78% who say they need more emotional support post treatment receive the help they need to move forwards with their lives.
It has also pledged to train 10,000 Workplace Cancer Support Ambassadors, to provide further emotional support to an estimated one million people impacted by cancer.
Mark Guymer, Chief Executive of Cancer Support UK said: “We believe that no one impacted by cancer should suffer needlessly. So I would like to express my gratitude to the Dorset Cancer Care Foundation, for partnering with us on our journey to achieve our Cancer Coach and Workplace Cancer Support Ambassador commitments.
“When treatment finishes, cancer patients are faced with processing a multitude of powerful emotions, ranging from guilt at putting their loved ones through so much, to grief at the loss of their old selves. At least 92% of our Cancer Coach participants mention their fear of cancer recurrence and the ongoing challenges of managing this fear. This is why our Cancer Coach service is vital in giving them the space and tools to understand and manage their emotions, and move forwards with their lives.”
Jazmine White, the Dorset Cancer Care Foundation’s Charity Manager, said: “We are extremely pleased to partner with Cancer Support UK.
“We ease the burden of Dorset families every day through our financial support.
“Being able to also direct those people to the emotional support offered by Cancer Support UK only strengthens the way we can help people when they need it most.”