The following is posted on behalf of Penny Sophia-Chistophe:
On April 25th 2011 I received a phone call to inform me that my beloved cousin Georgie had died. It was the morning of my 22nd birthday. Georgie and I had always been close so his death was incredibly hard to bear. He was the sixth of my close relatives to die in my lifetime. Two Grandparents, two aunts, an uncle and now a cousin all snatched away by cancer.
A consequence of this is that I decided to channel my anger and sadness into trying to save others.
I applied to become an ambassador for Cancer Research UK (CRUK). CRUK’s ambassadors are a brilliant group of passionate supporters working hard to help CRUK effectively influence politicians, engage the local media in their campaigns and try to help them save lives. Our stories, experiences and passion have become one of CRUK’s most powerful campaigning tools and are vital part of their work.
As an ambassador my activities are varied and interesting:
* Communication with local politicians and parliamentary representatives; flagging up our campaign issues and persuading them to back us and take positive action on our behalf.
* Engaging with our local and regional press; securing coverage for our campaigns and raising awareness in our local area.
* Lobbying for specific cancer related campaigns.
Our current campaign is “A Voice for Radiotherapy”. CRUK believe everybody deserves the best chance at fighting cancer and beating it. This means giving them access to the best possible treatments. Up to half of all cancer patients could benefit from access to world class radiotherapy treatments but only 4/10 people with cancer currently do. We are campaigning to make sure it is available to everybody who could benefit from it.
Awareness of radiotherapy is low; a recent CRUK survey reveals that 14% of people are aware of it. We are concerned that a lack of public awareness means that radiotherapy does not receive the attention is needs to develop into a world class service in the UK.
We are calling on the government in England to introduce an action plan, to tackle unequal access to radiotherapy and make sure that all services have the appropriate workforce, the best treatments and the capacity to plan for the future. We want to make sure that everyone who needs it has access to world class radiotherapy treatments.
Please take a moment to sign our petition and get as many of your loved ones to do the same: http://e-activist.com/ea-action/action?ea.client.id=149&ea.campaign.id=9329&ea.tracking.id=PennySC
We will be handing this petition in at Downing Street in November. We are aiming for 36,000 signatures, one for every person who misses out every year.