(We’ll endeavour to keep members and visitors informed about interesting guest speakers, watch this space.)
It was our pleasure in September to welcome Wendy Brown from Cancer Focus NI (formerly Ulster Cancer Foundation) to our weekly meeting. Wendy gave an informative talk about the charity. It receives limited funding from the government and all money raised goes towards projects in NI. Not only does Cancer Focus NI raise awareness about cancer through schools and business talks, including its 'keeping well van,' it has also funded the first cancer research unit at Queen's University. The charity is committed to outreach to older people in our commmunity and its care service works directly with cancer patients, including those with breast cancer and laryngectomies. Further services include counselling, art therapy, bereavement and family support. It runs a 'Zest for life' course over a six week period for post treatment patients which is therapeutically led with the support of a qualified counsellor. Cancer Focus NI is the only charity which offers expert bra fitting post treatment of breast cancer. Over 80 people per week take part in the 'Sing for Life' choir which is jointly funded by the charity and the Crescent Arts Centre. Friends of Cancer Focus NI groups, through which volunteers fund-
Cancer Focus NI will be 50 next year!
October was Breast Cancer Awareness Month and tonight we were joined by Joanne Harris, founder of Knitted Knockers. Joanne gave a very interesting talk about breast cancer and its impact on men as well as women. Despite women being affected most, some 16 men per year are diagnosed with breast cancer. Knitted Knockers provide handmade breast prosthetics for Women following mastectomy/breast operations. Volunteers knit 100% cotton breasts (acryllic breasts for swimming) and sew cotton fabric drain and tote bags and cushions for female and male patients. The group works closely with the Southern Area Health and Care Trust and is the registered provider of knitted cotton prosthetics in NI . It meets on the first Monday of each month at Brownlow House where you are welcome to join them to assist with knitting and stuffing the prosthetics and sewing drain and tote bags.
Joanne received a retiring donation of £182 from President Tanya, whose father died from breast cancer in 2014, Rotarians and guests.