Older People Living with Cancer

Peer advocates supporting older people affected by cancer

Our team may be SMALL but the difference we make to people’s lives has a BIG impact

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Laura Thomas and Sue Campbell of Age Connects Cardiff tell us about their tight knit team:

In the first months of starting the project our priority was to promote the service and to recruit our vital peer volunteer support advocates.  We have worked hard to promote the project across Cardiff and the Vale, including participating in a variety of road shows which proved to be successful.

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This success has been matched by the number of referrals we have received with the project already supporting 47 individuals. Our peer volunteer support advocates are matched with those people needing support and quickly start making a real difference.   As one of our clients said

“I am so pleased I made that call, I no longer feel I am facing this horrid disease on my own.”

Peer volunteer support advocates support people with a range of activities from:

  • providing emotional support in their own homes
  • being available at the end of a phone
  • helping them to attend various hospital appointments
  • visiting them whilst they have been in hospital,

Our dedicated Volunteers have experience of cancer in some form or another and come from a range of backgrounds, each of them bringing a wealth of skills, knowledge and experience.

Volunteer training

Volunteer training

We continue to build good working relationships with other cancer services, especially Macmillan, who have recently added us to their web page with a link to Age Connects Cancer, Older People and Advocacy web site, and Tenovus cancer care continues to share information with us and provide training opportunities for our volunteers.

Volunteer Coordinator, Alice Matthews

Volunteer Coordinator, Alice Matthews

Our team is small and is made up of 4 active Peer volunteer support advocates , 1 paid advocate and 1 paid volunteer co-ordinator both whom work 14 hours each per week. We also have 7 hours of administration and 5 hours of managerial support. This equates to only 1 full time paid member of staff which highlights how much this project relies on the dedication, experience and good work of our brilliant Peer volunteer support advocates.

Our team may be SMALL but the difference we make to people’s lives has a BIG impact.

 

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Author: Marie McWilliams

OPAAL's National Development Officer

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