Support charity at grand coffee event

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A COURAGEOUS resident, who successfully lived through cancer, is calling on people to support Macmillan’s World’s Biggest Coffee Morning.

Shirley, from Skegness, was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2003, and has been a member of Macmillan’s Skegness fund raising committee since.

Shirley, 59, who did not wish to give her surname, said: “We have a strong committee in Skegness, but we are in need of some new people to come and help us in supporting those who need it most.

“When I was first diagnosed with cancer, it was devastating. My son’s father died before he was born and I was a single parent. I was most afraid of dying, of leaving my son; he was only 11 at the time.

“The team at Macmillan, I couldn’t praise high enough, they were fantastic. I had a Macmillan nurse called Elizabeth, and she was great. When I was poorly and couldn’t work, she helped me get a Macmillan grant because I couldn’t pay for petrol to my hospital appointments.

“The worst part was telling my son, but she even helped me with that. She listened, and was there whenever I needed to talk, but we also had a laugh; she made me feel part of a group, and that I wasn’t alone.”

An event, which coincides with World Coffee Morning will be taking place at The Embassy Theatre Skegness on Friday, September 28, between 10am and 3pm to help raise funds and awareness.

Kathy Blythe, Macmillan Development Manager, said: “We at Macmillan want to ensure that a range of support is available in the local communities to help those people living with and beyond cancer.

“Being diagnosed with cancer can be a very difficult time, and we want to ensure that the best support is available, especially for those who might live a long way from their local Hospital.

Shirley, continues: “Looking back at my experience with cancer and my reason to want to support Macmillan, there was someone who really made me want to help and give something back.

“When I was being treated with chemotherapy, I met a young woman that I became friends with, she was in her early thirties and pregnant when she was diagnosed with breast cancer.

“After her son was born, her cancer got worse. Usually when you go through something like that with someone, you can come out on the other side and have a celebration that you both got through it. Well, she died that January.

“And she is why I want to help out with Macmillan. I look back at her with all her determination and think, she shouldn’t have died. She should be here.

“If everyone just gave a little time to help others, the world would be so much a better place. We want to raise as much as possible and we are also looking for volunteers to join our committee, just by giving as much time as they are happy to.”