Improving access to cancer treatment and support for everyone
We believe everyone in Wales should have equal access to cancer treatment and support, so we work hard to take our services right into the heart of communities.
Our three Mobile Support Units travel across Wales delivering chemotherapy and lymphoedema treatments because we know journeys to and from hospital for cancer treatment can be expensive, long and stressful. So we bring treatment closer to people’s homes. We help save cancer patients those long journeys to and from hospital and every year we save patients around 45,000 miles.
Over the years we’ve treated thousands of patients on our Mobile Support Units. And in October 2013 we launched our second Unit in which is dedicated to the treatment, support and care of lymphoedema, a condition often caused by cancer treatment.
In 2018 we were thrilled to expand our Mobile Support Unit service again, with the launch of our third Unit. Even bigger again, this is the largest mobile chemotherapy space in the world.
To deliver unique support services to cancer patients and their families
Our range of Cancer Support services have been specifically designed to meet the needs of cancer patients and their families and are free for as long as they are needed. Our free Support Line (0808 808 1010) is open 365 days a year. Every year our nurses handle about 12,000 calls from people needing support.
Our Cancer Support Advisors are based in local hospitals and communities and give advice to help cancer patients and their families make ends meet. They carry out benefits assesments and help fill out complex forms, so people can access the money they're entitled to. Each year we help claim around £4 million for cancer patients and their loved ones.
We also offer a Money Management service. Our expert Advisors can talk you through money management and budgeting, as well as helping you to tackle any debt.
We all have emotional issues. But dealing with everyday life when you've been affected by cancer can be even more difficult. We know that a cancer diagnosis not only affects someone physically, but emotionally too. That's why we launched our ACTivate Your Life - Affected by Cancer service in 2018. Our courses are designed to help people affected by cancer take control, by learning how to understand and respond to negative thoughts and feelings, practice mindfulness and take more power over their actions.
Funding research to develop treatments and support those living with and beyond cancer
In the 1960s we built the Tenovus Institute for Cancer Research in Cardiff which carried out vital research into the causes of cancer. Our scientists developed the use of Tamoxifen, now used worldwide to treat breast cancer, and Zoladex which treats prostate cancer.
We fund researchers of tomorrow who are looking for the cure, as well as the researchers who are looking into the best ways we can care and support the people affected by cancer today. We do this by working with world-leading cancer experts, as well as patients themselves, to make sure we fund not only the best research, but the most relevant.
We currently fund research students in Universities across Wales, covering a wide range of subjects from development of new drugs and treatments to the social and practical implications of a cancer diagnosis.
Our iGrants fund innovative, people-focused research projects that look at prevention, detection, treatment, and support. The grants are awarded by our Research Advisory Group (RAG) which is made up of people affected by cancer who help us decide upon the research we fund.
In 2010 we carried out research that demonstrated that singing in a choir improved the quality of life of cancer patients, survivors, their families and carers.We now have Sing with Us choirs across Wales and England to support anyone affected by cancer.
We wanted to understand more about how singing in our choirs could have a positive impact on people affected by cancer. So in 2016, we undertook more research with the Centre for Performance Science (a partnership between Royal College of Music and Imperial College London).
We tested the saliva of our choir members for a range of biomarkers and found a positive impact on their stress hormones, their immune systems and inflammation response.
The results raised the possibility that an activity as simple as singing in a choir for just an hour can put people in the best possible position to receive treatment, maintain remission and support others. But we need your help to reach more people affected by cancer. This was hugely exciting and we're continuing our research in this area.
Explore new ways to help prevent cancer
Our Online Health Check helps people learn more about how to reduce their risk of cancer, while also helping to identify pre-existing warning signs of the disease. We take our Health Check into communities, companies and events across Wales.
During the year we also run campaigns to help people quit smoking and raise awareness of sun safety. Our Sun safety advisors attend events during the summer, spreading our sun safety message!
Every October during Breast Cancer Awareness Month, we also help raise awareness of the signs and symptoms of breast cancer. As one of the most common forms of cancer, we want more women, and men, to know what to look out for.
Raising funds and having fun
We have over 60 charity shops in Wales and South West England, which as well as raising vital funds, create jobs and volunteer roles, helping raise awareness of our work in communities.
We also have a range of events and fundraising campaigns throughout the year which help to raise vital funds to support our work.
But we couldn't do anything without the amazing support of our incredible volunteers. We have around 2,000 volunteers across the charity who every year give around 300,000 hours of their time!