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Guest blog: Wokingham Cancer Support Network - Cancer Champions


Guest blog: Wokingham Cancer Support Network - Cancer Champions


Vickie Randall from The Wokingham Cancer Support Network tells us about the work they are doing to help support people living with cancer.

"The Wokingham Cancer Support Network has been established as a community project to support people living in and around the Wokingham borough that are affected by cancer. Meeting other people with similar experiences can be invaluable.

The aim of this project is to support people in a range of ways. There are 4 elements of support:

Direct peer-to-peer support  Volunteers will offer support on a regular basis. This will be agreed but is likely to be weekly for a couple of hours over an initial 3 month period. They will be able to lend a listening ear as well as help with light tasks if necessary.

Monthly Meet-ups  Group support offers a regular opportunity to come together in an informal setting to share experiences. We aim to have workshops and talks in alternate months.

Online support  Established through Facebook a closed chat group is available for people to share experiences, ask questions or simply reach out at any time during the day or night.

Information and Signposting  We will do our best to signpost you to a particular group or service that you may need, we will also promote other services and groups through our online Facebook page.

If you are newly diagnosed, living with cancer or have recently left treatment, or your caring for someone with cancer the support network is here to help.

You can make a referral into the network either through a GP, health professional, family member or by contacting us direct.

With the emphasis on ‘local’ the support model can be delivered into more areas as the scheme becomes more established.

We are recruiting volunteers to join the team and get involved at different levels.

Cancer Champion Volunteers will offer direct support to a person who is receiving medical treatment or has recently left hospital. As a volunteer you will receive professional training and support. You will be asked to make a regular commitment to help the person that you will be matched with. You will have had some personal experience with cancer.

Network Volunteers, are asked to help at the monthly meet-ups.

Online Volunteers, are being asked to help us with our online community.

Our recent monthly meet-up was a great success, we enjoyed a candle making workshop. We had some great feedback, here’s what Wendy said:

“Thank you so much for arranging such an enjoyable afternoon. I’m sure others found it equally interesting: candles, chats, giraffes, tea and nibbles were all memorable! As a Cancer support meeting it was good to see how such a workshop enabled people to open up, yet without the usual formality. Looking forward to the next meeting!”

The project has been established by ‘Involve’ which is an infrastructure charity delivering a range of services and projects throughout Bracknell Forest and Wokingham to support the voluntary, community and faith sectors."

To find out more, you can contact Vickie on Vickie.Randall@involve.community or calling 01344 304404. More information is available at www.involve.community/cancer.



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