How did you start volunteering?
My first contact with CLIC Sargent was in August 2006 when I was admitted as a patient on Sky Ward, at the University Hospital of Wales in Cardiff. I met the CLIC Sargent Youth Development Worker on the ward. She spent time with me and invited me on a number of trips during my treatment. The first trip I took part in was a long weekend to Scotland, where I met lots of people my age from around the UK who also had or were being treated for cancer.
In February 2008 I took part in a Talking Cancer day in London, where teenagers from around the UK came together to talk about difficulties they had during their treatment. Following that I volunteered to be a member of the CLIC Sargent Survivors Task Force.
What does your role involve?
My role involves attending regular group meetings, where we discuss issues that are important to children and young people with cancer. As a group we come up with ideas and suggestions of how CLIC Sargent could help solve these problems. Last year the Survivors Task Force helped to plan and run the 2008 Survivors Conference at Aston University in Birmingham. I even stood at the front and chaired the first day of the conference!
I attend five or six survivors meetings a year as well as going to other CLIC Sargent conferences and events. I also help various departments via email. I give comments on things like new information booklets, leaflets and surveys. I try to help CLIC Sargent as much as I can.
What motivates you to volunteer?
Since being diagnosed with cancer and going through the rough experience of treatment I want to help other people who are going through it. By volunteering for CLIC Sargent I feel I am achieving that. It gives me great pleasure taking part in CLIC Sargent events because they focus on the future, and although being told you have cancer is the worst news you can get, CLIC Sargent helps people to share their thoughts and look forward.
CLIC Sargent helps young people who are diagnosed with cancer realise that they are not alone.