You don’t have to face cancer alone. Macmillan Cancer Support therapist Nicky Byrne talks about how her team help people affected by cancer living in Huddersfield.
“People often feel isolated when they’ve been diagnosed with cancer – both physically and psychologically. It can be difficult to understand what is happening and hard to talk about it with friends and family”, says Nicky, who leads the Macmillan Rehabilitation Team.
Her team provides support for hundreds of people every year who are affected by cancer. A sense of isolation among the people they visit in and around Huddersfield is a common theme.
Nicky said: “When we first meet, there’s often a feeling of relief that someone is there to support them. They start to think of themselves as a person again, rather than a cancer patient. Our role is to help people make the most of their situation. A good example is a lady we’ve seen recently called Lisa. When we met her at her home, she was effectively bed-bound. Lisa had been diagnosed with breast cancer and that had spread to her spine. She was still going through treatment but she had lost all her confidence – she couldn’t bring herself to leave the home.
“Having talked with her, it was clear Lisa wanted some independence back. At first, our team worked with her so she was able to bathe herself and get round the house, and then we looked at what she used to enjoy doing – walking in the countryside. She didn’t think she could go outside by herself anymore. She could, and we worked with her to build that confidence back – at first we took her out in a wheelchair, then on crutches. Before we knew it, she was happy to be out walking again, doing what she loved. That was a huge lift for her and helped her get some quality back in her life.”
“We helped her get some quality back in her life.”
The rehabilitation team visits people in their homes, also providing support for carers, relatives and friends. The team helped 500 local people last year, providing tailored therapy for patients - often to help with mobility and a return to regular activities, such as walking the dog or sports.
It’s just one of the many services provided by Macmillan Cancer Support. We’re here with medical, emotional and financial support to anyone affected by cancer.
Visit us for answers, advice or just a chat. Cancer information is available free at the Jayne Garforth Support Centre, Calderdale Hospital, Halifax, open Monday-Friday, 10.00am-4.00pm (except Tuesday, 10.00am-1.00pm).
If you have any questions about cancer, need support or just someone to talk to, call the Macmillan Support Line free
on 0808 808 00 00
Monday to Friday 9am-8pm.