Survivors help push appeal past £10,000

From left, June Kennedy, consultant Nathan Coombs Jennifer Green, of Brighter Futures, and Anne Slater

From left, June Kennedy, consultant Nathan Coombs Jennifer Green, of Brighter Futures, and Anne Slater

First published in News by

CANCER survivors Anne Slater and June Kennedy have helped tip the Great Western Hospital’s breast cancer appeal over the £10,000 mark.

The Great Western Hospital Trust’s charity, Brighter Futures, is trying to raise £75,000 to pay for a cutting edge new breast cancer radiotherapy treatment which could change the lives of 150 women in Swindon each year.

The treatment zaps areas affected by breast cancer with targeted radiotherapy while patients are still in the operating room, which means they will not have to travel to Oxford every day for weeks on end to receive a traditional course of radiotherapy.

Anne and June, both from Liden, helped Brighter Futures take another step towards the cause after donating £2,000 to the appeal from a bring and buy sale in Liden Community Hall last month.

Anne, a former school cook, was diagnosed with cancer at the age of 42 and had to have a mastectomy to reduce her risk of relapse.

She is pleased that there is a new treatment available, and that she is able to help.

She said: “There was bric-a-brac, nearly new, children’s clothing, jewellery, toys, books, and a cake sale, which was really popular.

“What raised the most money though was Ricky the Racoon, and you had to guess when his birthday was. That raised £174. We just want to say a big thank you to all our loyal helpers and the shops and all the people that made it along on the day.

June, 69, was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2005 and again after it returned in 2010 and eventually had a double mastectomy.

But she knew first hand how difficult it was to travel back and forth to Oxford every day for 15 weeks for a ten minute course of radiotherapy, and said the new treatment will be great for new patients.

She said: “It was exhausting. To think that somebody could have this done and be finished after the operation, it is just amazing.

“I would not wish anybody to go through what I went through in any way. And this treatment is just marvellous. It would just be so much easier for patients that way.

“Everybody knows somebody who has had this which is why I think it is such a popular cause.

“It’s fantastic that now we have reached the £10,000 mark.”

Jen Green, head of fundraising for Brighter Futures, is delighted with the reaction the appeal has received from members of the public.

She said: “The enthusiasm and the generosity from the people of Swindon and the surrounding areas has been overwhelming.

“It’s fantastic that we have reached the £10,000 mark but the target is £75,000, so the challenge now is to keep it up and raise even more.

“It’s really all down to the little things that people are doing to help in the community.”

Jen is now appealing to businesses for corporate support to help bring them to the next milestone.

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