Thursday 25 October 2018 2:42 pm

Making meaningful connections through cancer


Each year in the UK, 359,960 cancer diagnoses are made. That’s 359,960 people of all ages and backgrounds told they have cancer. The impact of a cancer diagnosis affects not only the person themselves, it affects all areas of their lives, including their families, children and relationships.

It’s vital that raising awareness of cancer and support for those affected by it continues.

Our network of People’s Postcode Lottery supported charities includes several good causes, which are working to provide essential services and support to those living with cancer and their families. Over the past nine years alone, players of People’s Postcode Lottery have already raised over £20 million for cancer charities at a national and local level.

Over £300,000 has been awarded to 32 local good causes since 2009 through our community grants programme. This funding has enabled cancer charities at a community level to continue supporting the health and wellbeing, both physical and mental, of children, people and their families living with and affected by cancer. Local grants have helped support initiatives such as counselling services, targeted rehabilitation projects, access to expert advice, as well as bereavement support.

With the past two months marking Childhood Cancer Awareness and Breast Cancer Awareness, it’s an important time for us to highlight all the charities that players of People’s Postcode Lottery are supporting and celebrate the incredible things that lottery funding can enable.

Maggie’s brings people together to help combat the isolation and despair that often accompanies a cancer diagnosis. So far, players of People's Postcode Lottery have raised almost £12 million for Maggie's.

Maggie’s were the first cancer support charity that players awarded funding to in 2008 and funding over the last 10 years has allowed the charity to continue Maggie Keswick Jencks' legacy. Maggie’s brings people together to help combat the isolation and despair that often accompanies a cancer diagnosis. There's no need to make an appointment, or seek a referral. Anyone with cancer or their friends and family can come in and speak to one of their professional cancer support specialists, or take part in a wide range of programme activities – including nutrition workshops, creative writing classes, receiving financial and benefits advice and personal or couples counselling.

Thanks to our players, Maggie's have launched five new standalone workshops to help people navigate their closest relationships when dealing with cancer.

The Ellen MacArthur Cancer Trust works with young people from all over the UK aged 8–24, using sailing to help them regain their confidence on their way to recovery from cancer and leukaemia. Studies into the psychological effects of cancer in children highlight how important positive personal relationships are in facilitating coping with cancer. It’s this insight which informs their work with children and young people.

Thanks to players support since 2013, Ellen MacArthur Cancer Trust is on track to help more young people than ever rebuild their confidence while undergoing treatment or recovering from cancer and leukaemia.

Thanks to players of People's Postcode Lottery, CLIC Sargent have helped over 7,000 children and young people with cancer.

CLIC Sargent provides vital emotional, practical, financial and clinical support to young cancer patients and their families during and after treatment. The charity also takes what they are told about the impact of cancer on young people's lives to service providers and policy makers to help change things for the better.

Our players' support helps CLIC Sargent be there for more families when the doctor says it's cancer.

CLIC Sargent know that it takes a team of professionals to support a family. The service provided is tailored to ensure families are offered the right support in those first few crucial weeks.

Breast Cancer Care is the newest charity to be supported by players of People’s Postcode Lottery who have just received over £1 million, which will allow them to innovate and improve their existing support to people with, through and beyond breast cancer, from day one, every step of the way.

As the UK's leading breast cancer support charity, all of their support is free. Breast Cancer Care offer support to people through their expert helpline, website and online discussion forums, wide range of publications and services for healthcare professionals. In addition to activities like 'Someone Like Me' support from people who've been there and are trained to help, as well as local events where people receive support and meet others going through the same thing.

Over 1,000 people a week in Great Britain are diagnosed with breast cancer, with family members and friends affected too. Last year Breast Cancer Care helped people more than five million times through their publications, website, face-to-face services and dedicated helpline.

By 2020, one in two of us will face a cancer diagnosis in our lifetime. People’s Postcode Lottery is transformational in providing long-lasting support to cancer charities, enabling them to not only continue but also grow the vital services and support for individuals and their families when they are facing what can be the hardest time of their lives.