24th Feb, 2020

Local celebrities to launch new West Midlands ovarian cancer support hub

Catherine Vonledebur 15th Jan, 2020 Updated: 15th Jan, 2020

DEATH in Paradise star Nina Wadia and a former Commonwealth discus thrower are attending this week’s launch of a new West Midlands ovarian cancer support hub.

The Dudley-based hub, run by national charity Ovacome, only went live last autumn, after it won £49,420 of National Lottery funding from The People’s Projects, and a weekly support group is set to open in Coventry this spring.

This new ovarian cancer support hub, will provide an invaluable lifeline for women and their families across the Coventry and Solihull region, affected by the disease.

The launch will take place at Birmingham’s Hyatt Regency Hotel tomorrow, Thursday, January 16, from 2.30pm – 6pm.

Ovacome’s newly-appointed regional hub support co-ordinator Laura Nott said: “We are really excited to be able to invite our West Midlands ovarian cancer community – women, their friends and families and healthcare professionals – to celebrate the launch of our new support hub with an afternoon tea at the Hyatt Regency Hotel.”

Attending the launch are two local celebrities, ex-EastEnders actor Nina Wadia and former Commonwealth discus thrower Kevin Brown, who also holds two vehicle pulling world records and has pledged to support Ovacome by fundraising through some new world record attempts in 2020.

During Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month this March it will be shining a light on the disease by illuminating Birmingham’s Old Joe bell tower in teal – the colour representing the disease – from March 2-4.

Ovarian cancer can be an isolating disease with those diagnosed less likely to meet others in their position than other more common cancers.

Laura has already identified the need for the Coventry ovarian cancer support group, which she is planning to start running, alongside local clinical nurse specialists, in April.

She said: “We are in the process of consulting with people locally to see how we can make the group as accessible as possible. It is likely to be in a non-hospital venue in central Coventry, perhaps in the evening so that people working through the day can come.

“Our main aim with the support group and the hub is to create a space for those affected by ovarian cancer to share experiences and offer each other encouragement, friendship, knowledge and understanding, while at the same time, with Ovacome’s contacts and experience, giving them access to expert advice on their health and wellbeing.

“One woman told me ‘It is so good to be able to just pop in and see you now that you are practically on my doorstep.’ She had recently become a member of Ovacome and was about to have surgery. I am so pleased to be able to offer such direct, accessible support to women, exactly when they need it.”

Laura is supported by two local Ovacome ambassadors, retired businessman Richard Riley, who lost his wife Maxine to ovarian cancer, and Dot Swallow, who was diagnosed with the disease 13 years ago and is the gynae support group leader at The White House cancer support centre in Dudley, where Ovacome’s hub is located.

● If you are in the West Midlands and would like some support to help you manage a diagnosis of ovarian cancer or would like to attend the event, contact Laura on l.nott@ovacome.org.uk or contact Laura on 07586 899334. Visit www.ovacome.org.uk for more information, or call 0800 008 7054.

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