Cancer Focus Needs Funds To Support Families


It’s a fact: Cancer Focus NI needs £6k a month to support local families hit by cancer

 When a mum, dad or grandparent has cancer it affects everyone in the family.

The Cancer Focus Northern Ireland family support service helps local families, particularly children and young people, when an adult close to them has cancer.

This vital service needs to raise £5,928 every single month to make sure the charity’s skilled family support workers can visit people’s homes when they are going through one of the toughest times of their lives.

John, James, Una and Henry Farry are just four of the children who have benefited hugely from the Cancer Focus NI family support service after they lost their dad Gareth to cancer.

Last year, this lifeline service supported 555 Northern Ireland families – and now Cancer Focus NI is calling on Downpatrick people to help them in the run up to Christmas to continue this essential work.

Now, there is a new, fun way to raise money to help local families in need. Cancer Focus NI is asking you to play in our Weekly Lottery where you can win up to £1,000 on special bonus draws – and there is a prize of up to £150 per week. It only costs £1 per week.

Sylvia Calvert, from Downpatrick, who has been a member of the Cancer Focus NI breast cancer groups in the town for over 30 years, recently won £150. She said: “I couldn’t believe it. “I’ve never won anything before so I’m delighted. I think I’ll treat myself to a Fitbit. I’d definitely encourage other people to join the lottery – you just never know, it could  be your turn next.”

Even if you don’t win, we are all winners by providing essential support! Your kind contribution directly funds the family support service and helps people like mum of four Sinead Farry, who lost her husband Gareth to cancer in 2013.

Home visits

Sinead said: “Rachel, from the family support service, came out to our home to speak with the children to help them understand why their Daddy had cancer.

“She helped take the fear away and spent time on a one to one basis ensuring the kids knew they were not alone. I gained a feeling of steadiness and belief because of the family support service. When my world was falling apart, Rachel gave me the strength to say, I can do this with the kids. We’ll carry on going to the family support evenings – they help me feel that everything is going to be OK. It’s such a wonderful service.”

Sylvia Calvert from Downpatrick was a winner of the Cancer Focus health lottery.

Dervilia Kernoghan, Head of Care Services at Cancer Focus NI, said: “It can be isolating and frightening for children and young people when an adult family member has cancer or they lose a loved one.

“It can bring dramatic changes to their lives and can affect their time at school, relationships and their ongoing emotional development. We are here to help them through that.”

Only therapeutic service in NI

She added: “We are the only local charity that provides a therapeutic family support service for people in Northern Ireland. Our highly specialised support staff not only visit families in their homes on a one to one basis, but also run support and bereavement evenings at our head office in Belfast and away days at locations around Northern Ireland.

“It is a service that could benefit all of us at some point and that’s why it’s so important to raise as much money as possible to ensure we can reach local families that need our help.”

Sign up now

Cancer Focus NI’s weekly lottery gives players the chance to win up to £1,000 in bonus draws in June and November Sign up to the Cancer Focus NI by Friday November 16 and you will be entered in the autumn bonus draw on December 3. There is also a prize of up to £150 each week, plus a further nine weekly prizes of up to £10 each.

Please support your local cancer charity by becoming a Cancer Focus NI Weekly Lottery member. Your kind support can make such a difference.

The simple way to play and to ensure your unique number is in the draw each week is to pay by Direct Debit.  It’s easy and safe.  Sign up online or give us a call on – it’s that easy.”

To find out how to sign up visit:

or call 028 9068 0745.