Posted on Friday 31 May 2019

in News

Young cancer survivor thanks volunteers for charity support

A young cancer survivor who was supported by CLIC Sargent is marking national Volunteers’ Week by thanking local volunteers who make the support the charity gives possible.

Helen was supported by CLIC Sargent and is now a volunteer

Helen was supported by CLIC Sargent and is now one of our vital volunteers

Helen Haar, 23, was supported by CLIC Sargent when she was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin lymphoma in 2016. This Volunteers’ Week, Helen is sharing her story as a cancer survivor, and a volunteer herself, to highlight the impact volunteering can have on others.

Helen said: “I was first in contact with CLIC Sargent the day I was diagnosed with cancer. It was 2pm in the afternoon and when I arrived at the hospital my CLIC Sargent social worker was already there waiting for me.

“The support from my social worker was really important to me, to talk through things I couldn’t talk to everyone else about. I had so many questions and she understood what I was feeling.

“Cancer massively affected my life. Financially it ruined me, I had to move back home and give up my university course studying culinary arts as a chef. I was worried about how I would live my life afterwards. I don’t know how I would have coped without CLIC Sargent.”

After months of chemotherapy and radiotherapy at University College Hospital and going into remission in December 2016, Helen decided to give back to the charity, by volunteering. She’s now calling on more people to get involved and volunteer.

“After my treatment, I was struggling with motivation to get out of the house. I needed to keep active and my mind flowing and so I decided to volunteer. I chose to volunteer for CLIC Sargent as they helped me through my own cancer journey.

My role is to go out in the community and spread the word about the charity. I have met so many new and inspiring people through volunteering. I went to a primary school and did a talk which made me feel really good."

“Volunteering is so rewarding and makes me feel important because I am contributing to something. Knowing you are representing a charity that has young lives at the heart of it and can make a difference to another young person who feels alone.”

Volunteers gave more than 58,000 hours to keep CLIC Sargent’s charity shops open last year. From bucket collecting to cheering runners on, CLIC Sargent had more than 1,500 volunteers give up their time to support the charity in 2018.

Lauren Smith, National Volunteer Manager at CLIC Sargent, said: “We want to say a huge thank you to every single one of our volunteers, like Helen, who gave up their time to support CLIC Sargent in the last year.

“This Volunteers’ Week is a chance for us to say thank you. Because of them, we are able to be there for children and young people with cancer at a time when they need it most. No family should have to face cancer alone. Our services help them financially, practically and emotionally and our volunteers help make that happen.”

If you’d like to learn more about volunteering for CLIC Sargent or get involved, visit our Get Volunteering page.

Notes to editors

For more information about CLIC Sargent please contact Jessica Rees at jessica.rees@clicsargent.org.uk or call 0117 311 2659.

About cancer in children and young people

Today, 12 more children and young people in the UK will hear the devastating news that they have cancer. Treatment normally starts immediately, is often given many miles from home and can last for up to three years. Although survival rates are over 80%, cancer remains the single largest cause of death from disease in children and young people in the UK.

About CLIC Sargent

When cancer strikes young lives CLIC Sargent helps families limit the damage cancer causes beyond their health. CLIC Sargent is the UK’s leading charity for young cancer patients and their families. We provide specialist support, to help and guide each young cancer patient and their family. We will fight tirelessly for them, individually, locally and nationally. For more information, visit www.clicsargent.org.uk

Note to sub editors

Please note that the name ‘CLIC Sargent’ should not be abbreviated to CLIC, and that the word ‘CLIC’ should always appear in capitals, as above.

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