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New cancer care service launched for local people

Carers Support West Sussex and cancer charity Macmillan Cancer Support is today (Monday 25th March 2019) launching a new service to support those caring for someone living with cancer.



The two charities have joined forces on a two and a half year project to support adults in the county who are currently caring for someone with a cancer diagnosis.  A new specialist team of Carer Wellbeing Workers will work with those carers to provide them with the emotional support and information they need.

The new service will:

  • Offer 1-2-1 support for unpaid family and friend carers of people living with cancer
  • Provide useful information and refer people to other local support services where needed
  • Offer emotional support during this tough time
  • Provide access to all the services Carers Support West Sussex has to offer, including carer groups, a carer health and wellbeing fund, access to counselling or call back services and many more.

Susan Bolton from Lancing cares for her husband Richard, who has been diagnosed with liver cancer, and her son Adrian, who has Asperger’s.  She’s one of the first carers to use the new service. 

She said:

“My hubby was diagnosed last year with a rare cancer and our lives were turned upside down.  To know that I can email and get a call back within 24 hours is a life saver. I got so low and could not get support anywhere as the waiting lists were months not weeks.  Carers Support helped me through that time and it was invaluable. 

“I always thought I would not be able to talk to anyone about my feelings and thoughts, but it was as though I was talking to a friend and I know I will still get a call each month to see how things are.  I am and always will be very grateful.”

Jill Lancaster is Community Team Lead at Carers Support West Sussex and said:

“Carers tell us a cancer diagnosis can start what feels like a rollercoaster ride for both the person with cancer along with their family and friends. They might need to support the person with cancer through a minefield of clinical, emotional and practical issues but, all too often, with the focus on the person with the diagnosis, fail recognise their needs, concerns and the impact on their own health.

Our experienced, friendly workers understand this rollercoaster and the potential for

isolation with an uncertain future. They put the carer, be it family or friend, first and help them to find ways to sustain their role through the ups and downs to come.”

Kristiina Parkinson, Partnership Manager, Macmillan Cancer Support

 “As more of us are being diagnosed and living with cancer, it is vital we recognise and support the important role of people caring for those with cancer. Caring involves everything from driving the person with cancer to their treatments, supporting with house work and providing much needed emotional support. Cancer doesn’t wait for a convenient time in people’s lives and carers can end up juggling an overwhelming set of responsibilities. With this in mind I am so pleased we are able to provide carers in West Sussex with the support of this new service.


Gatwick Express team gives cash boost to Crawley charity

The Gatwick Express team has given a local charity a cash boost following a number of staff fundraising initiatives in recent months.



Maria Cook, Chair of Autism Support Crawley (left) takes delivery of a 'rail ticket cheque' from Gatwick Express managers

Autism Support Crawley, which supports children and adults on the autistic spectrum, has been given a generous donation of £1,931.15 thanks to kind-hearted Gatwick Express staff who have taken part in a series of activities at Gatwick Airport Station, including cake sales, a Christmas jumper competition and bucket appeals.

Station staff were delighted to be able to hand over a cheque to Autism Support Crawley on Tuesday, May 21 to the chairperson of the charity, Maria Cook.

She said:

“We are thrilled to receive such wonderful support from everyone at Gatwick Express.

“Their response to the voluntary work that we do for over 1,200 families across Sussex and Surrey is overwhelming. This will go a long way in helping us to continue to support families and work with lots of different professions to improve understanding, acceptance and inclusion in society,”she added.

Gatwick Express staff were inspired to support the charity after hosting a group from Autism Support Crawley for a ‘Try a Train’ event, during which autistic young people and adults were shown around the station to help them become more familiar and confident when travelling by train, as well as how to buy tickets to support more independent travel.

Gatwick area station manager David Stronell said:

“We’re really proud of all the work we have done to help the charity. The whole station has been involved in the fundraising.

“Since we started supporting the charity, it has sparked a lot of conversations and a lot of staff have talked about having children on the autistic spectrum. It has brought us all together and got people opening up about autism, which in turn has raised awareness for us all,” said David.

Charity trustee, member and service user Charlotte Gover said:

“The amazing donation from Gatwick Express will support so many of our families by enabling us to continue to provide information sessions, conferences, coffee mornings, evening meetings and much needed inclusive family events.”

Staff at Gatwick are now gearing up for their next fundraising events so watch this space!

This month also marks the 35th birthday of Gatwick Express and there have been plenty of activities going on to celebrate the occasion.

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