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The importance of cancer information and support services

Published: 04/02/24 | Categories: Influencing, Author: Eleanor Jones

Eleanor Jones, Macmillan Community Innovation Manager, explains the importance of access to cancer information and support services from her own experience.

Today is World Cancer Day. World Cancer Day raises awareness of cancer and the importance of access to life-saving cancer diagnosis, treatment, and care for all.


My mother is told she needs an urgent referral to the hospital. We leave the surgery being told we will receive a phone call that afternoon. I can’t look at my mother, I’m scared, scared that we are going to hear the ‘C’ word. She is admitted. We wait for news. We both know what’s coming.

We hear the words:

‘Mrs Davies you have endometrial cancer.’

Our World fell apart.

  • What happens now?
  • What do we do?
  • Is it terminal?
  • What’s the treatment?
  • Who can help us?
  • What do we do?

And most importantly, what on earth is endometrial cancer?

Many of these questions were answered, but many were not. I completed a lot of research and found out that endometrial cancer can be treated and that it is classified into four stages. But still I felt lost, I had no idea:

  • Where to turn?
  • Who to ask for help?
  • Who to speak to?
  • What to do?
  • What happens next?
  • What is the treatment plan?


We cried, we hugged, we talked and suddenly we got help. We were put in touch with a Macmillan nurse who helped us with everything, I suddenly had someone who knew what to do, knew how to help me and my mother, and most importantly someone who had the answers I had strived for.

In December, 20 years later, I saw that nurse at a conference I attended, and I finally was able to thank her for everything she had done for my mother and me.

Knowing what help was available and where to obtain it made a huge difference at a very difficult time.

This was the reason I became the Macmillan Community Innovation Manager. Everyone needs to know what cancer information and support services are available to them at point of diagnosis. No-one should feel lost or scared, no-one should feel alone.


WCVA is currently working with Macmillan to ensure that people have equal access to cancer information and support services.

Macmillan offers a huge range of information and support services including a helpline, information leaflets and videos in different languages.

Getting the right support at the right time is essential for anyone going through a cancer journey, whether it is the individual diagnosed with cancer, a family member, a friend, or someone who just needs to know more. Macmillan information and support services are there for whoever may need them.

Find out more about the Macmillan community innovation project.