Northampton Library, Northants
23rd January 2015
We began 2015 with a really exciting project (..which is a personal one too) in which we worked closely with Macmillan Cancer Support and the Northampton County Council to launch a service that supports all young people affected by Cancer, whether it is through their own diagnosis or that of a close family member or friend. The aim of the launch was to raise awareness of the service and to develop the right balance of support needed, encourage any young people affected by cancer to join the project focus group and get views on where the gaps are and how to work with them and other organisations to provide the right balance of services.
The launch for The C Word was held in the Central Library and was attended by young and older people affected by cancer and also in attendance were representatives from Northants County Council and Macmillan Cancer Support, volunteers plus local organisations, groups and the general public who showed their support for the launch and the causes that created the service. There was a Message Wall erected in the main foyer and was aimed at encouraging everyone to write positive messages or share their experiences and stories in a positive and enlightening way.
We were there to assist in raising awareness of the service, also to encourage attendees to participate in writing positive messages on the wall and engage young people in creative workshops. We delivered mini workshops throughout the day to young people (...and adults that were brave enough to get involved...) who attended the launch with their parents or with organisations and groups. The activities included canvas painting and Tshirt customisation and where aimed at engaging young people in creative activities
The message wall was the highlight of the day, with loads of positive messages that anyone can find encouraging and inspiring to read and more importantly came from personal experiences. One of the messages that we thought was a powerful quote read "Cancer does not change you, it changes the circumstances around you"... that definitely gave me something to think about and hope most of the emotive messages on the wall did the same to anyone who read them. By the end of the day, the message wall was so full of positive quotes and messages by people who wanted to express how they feel about cancer or what they have been through in a positive way.
This innovative service will be available to young people across the county who are struggling to deal with their own experiences of cancer, and need some extra help. Macmillan Cancer a support and Northants County Council are currently developing a programme of very different services to support teenagers and young people in whichever way they need it. Whether it is more information from the unique experience of Macmillan Cancer Support about a relation’s or friend’s condition, help with school, university or work, advice on finances or business start up, emotional support or just an opportunity to escape for an hour, we are looking to create an effective range of events delivered through the unique community reach of the 36 libraries throughout the county.
We enjoyed ourselves on the day as it was a successful launch, we look forward to the development of this very necessary service and are proud to be involved and associated with it! We feel proud to be supporting a cause we passionately believe in and continue to show support for such local services. We would like to thank all those that attended and showed support to The C Word service launch. Special thanks to the representatives from Northants County Council (@mycountcouncil) and Macmillan Cancer Support, to all the volunteers, the Library staff (@Libraries_Plus) and everyone involved in making it a success! Very special thanks to Abbie Weaver (@thecword) for organising the event, Don't Forget The Kids (@dont4getthekids), Alfes Cause (@AlfesCauseKids), to Sarah Brown (@seb826), Victor Agboola ( @Pres_VicotorA the University of Northampton Students Union President) and to Aman Mahoon Ghostdavandal Originals Team!