Maggie Keswick Jencks lived with advanced cancer for two years. During that time she used her knowledge and experience to create a blueprint for a new type of care. In order to live more positively with cancer, Maggie and her husband Charles believed you needed information that would allow you to be an informed participant in your medical treatment, stress-reducing strategies, psychological support and the opportunity to meet other people in similar circumstances in a relaxed domestic atmosphere. Maggie’s Centres are built around her belief that people should not “lose the joy of living in the fear of dying”. In November 1996, the first Maggie’s Centre opened in Edinburgh and what Maggie had planned became real.
We are now in the process of building a Maggie’s Centre in Cardiff and will soon be able to offer support to the thousands of people diagnosed with cancer in south east Wales. The new centre will open its doors in January 2019 and will become our 2nd centre in Wales – Maggie’s Swansea, which will be celebrating its 7th birthday in December 2018, currently has 1200 visits per month. Maggie’s support is unique and as such, people travel to be able to have the support Maggie’s offers, some from as far as Abergavenny and Cwmbran travel to Swansea as there is no other support like it anywhere else, however, we know that many people cannot travel whilst going through treatment and therefore don’t have the support they need. Having a new centre in Cardiff will mean that Maggie’s will be able to offer its support to people across the whole of south Wales.
Maggie’s Centres are there to provide practical, emotional and social support completely free of charge to anyone affected by a cancer diagnosis, not only the person living with cancer but their family and friends as well. Built in the grounds of cancer hospitals, we offer a break from the hospital environment and the chance to meet people who know what you’re going through. We’re funded entirely by the generosity of supporters; we do not receive any government funding.
Our centres are places to find practical advice about benefits and eating well; places where qualified experts provide emotional support; places to meet other people; places where you can simply sit in peace and quiet. Our core programme of support has been shown to improve physical and emotional wellbeing during treatment and recovery, this programme includes relaxation classes, yoga, art therapy, tai chi as well as support groups for specific cancers.
Here is a link to a short film that was recently produced for us and is currently being shown in cinemas across the UK - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j8EhZJucHwc
For more information about Maggie’s in Wales contact Rachael Davies – firstname.lastname@example.org / 07592104157
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