In Your Words

Breast cancer patient Kate uses our lifeline services

Mum of three Kate Gray is battling metastatic breast cancer – so breast cancer awareness month in October is especially poignant for her. Kate, husband David and daughters Emily (10), Connie (7) and Megan (4) have had tremendous support from Cancer Focus Northern Ireland.

Counselling was my saviour

Hello, my name is Paul Jeffcutt. Six years ago, I was diagnosed with kidney cancer: renal cell carcinoma. When the doctor told me the news, I thought my life was at an end. I sank down in the hospital bed in fear with n0 one to talk to.  

Kerrie appeals for support for breast cancer research

In Your Words Kerrie Douglas (34) from Ballymoney is waiting to have preventative surgery after she found out she has the BRCA2 mutant gene. Kerrie has three children, Mackenzie (14), Khalyn (8) and Cade (7).

Debra Rice In pink breast cancer

Mum Debra calls for support for cancer research

Debra Rice (44) was diagnosed with breast cancer and shortly after, was confirmed as a BRCA1 carrier. Debra shares her story with us below and underlines why funding into research is so important for her and her 8 year old daughter.

BRCA mum calls for support for breast cancer research

Ciara McKenna (31), a receptionist from Armagh, is married to Michael (35) and they have four boys, Kian (7), Ryan (5), Marc (4) and Ethan (five months). Ciara and her sister Siobhan Conlon (29), who is expecting her first baby, both have BRCA 1.

Emily runs the extra mile for Cancer Focus NI

There’s no stopping breast cancer patient Emily Stanton who was so full of determination to run the Belfast marathon for Cancer Focus Northern Ireland that she trained by jogging to hospital for her radiotherapy sessions.

Donna’s Teal Takeover

When her dad Matthew got cancer, Donna Shortt, decided to turn her home town Crumlin teal (Cancer Focus NI’s colour) for a week and hold a host of fundraising events from a car wash and zumbathon to a family fun day and a tug of war.

Gary takes on Marathon May

Life can change in an instant. From being a healthy and active person one day to being diagnosed with lung cancer the next, in August 2012 on his daughter’s 30th birthday, this is exactly what happened to Holywood man Gary Vint.

Mike’s malignant melanoma story

Retired college lecturer Mike Moran was urged by his son to have a mole on his back examined by his GP. Mike was conscious of the mole but as it was symptomless never had it checked out by a health care professional. “I used to monitor it and my wife would examine it but I never thought to go to my GP and have it examined. I used to cover it up and apply sun cream when out in the sun ,” he said.

Kicking the habit

Gerard Rogan, from west Belfast, is an electrical and mechanical engineer at local manufacturing company, Montupet. With the help of Cancer Focus NI’s Stop Smoking service, Gerard successfully stopped smoking after 12 years.

Skin cancer scar

Michele Slane (41), from Belfast, is married to Francis and has two children Neil (22) and Kirsty (10).  Michele, who was diagnosed with malignant melanoma in 2010, warns of the dangers of sunbeds and sunbathing. She says:

Proud to be a quitter

Teenager Rachel Armstrong joined forces with Cancer Focus NI on No Smoking Day to urge smokers to kick the habit. The 15-year-old started smoking when she was just 10.

Check your neck

Belfast mum Kylee Murphy wants to alert other young women to the signs and symptoms of thyroid cancer  after getting a shock diagnosis in 2015. The 29-year-old recently finished her treatment and is waiting to find out if it’s been a success.

Writing can help

Louise Gough was first diagnosed with bowel cancer in 2012. Her cancer has come back for a third time and she’s pinning her hopes on her very last cycle of chemotherapy – but keeps on smiling.

Looking to a brighter future

Mother and daughter Margaret Copeland, from Newtownhamilton, and Sharon Adams, from Dungannon, both made the brave decision to have double mastectomies when they discovered they had the BRCA 2 mutant gene, which greatly increases the risk of breast cancer.