30 April 2010
Moray Bradbury, Macmillan Information Coordinator at the newly opened Bracken Trust and Macmillan Information and Support Centre, Llandrindod Wells
The extended and refurbished Bracken Trust and Macmillan Information and Support Centre has opened its doors to patients and their carers - eight months after work began on the purpose built extension to the day centre in Llandrindod Wells.
Macmillan Cancer Support has invested over £400,000 on the new building, which will also house complementary therapy rooms. This state of the art centre will offer information for patients, their families and carers as well as quiet areas, where they can relax and talk to the Macmillan Cancer Information Coordinator, Moray Bradbury, who will be based at the centre.
One of the first people who will benefit from the new centre is Simone Spalding. Simone was diagnosed with advanced bowel cancer in September 2008 and has undergone colon and liver surgery as well as two cycles of chemotherapy.
She was told about the Bracken Trust following her diagnosis and she uses many of the services including complementary therapies, counselling and the Macmillan Information Coordinator, Moray Bradbury.
'The Bracken Trust has been a life saver. I live on my own and cancer is an awful thing to cope with on your own so in a way they have been my family. Cancer clouds everything that you do and I had got to the point that I didn’t want to go out. That was when my yoga teacher told me about the Bracken Trust.
'I love going there as you get such a lovely welcome. Sometimes I have rung up and told them I don’t feel like coming in and they have encouraged me to get in the car and drive there. I go there for acupuncture and have a massage twice a month. I also talk to the counsellor and Moray, the Macmillan Cancer Information Coordinator.
'If I need help she will phone up people and find out for me - I wish I had known about her sooner as I was trying to do everything for myself and it is so valuable to have someone like Moray.”
Simone lives in Rhayder but had to travel to Birmingham and Hereford for her treatment. She says it is vital to have support close to home and is hoping to volunteer at the new centre.
'The Bracken Trust is only 20 minutes away. I will go for a treatment but can spend up to an hour afterwards talking to people over a cuppa. It’s a pleasure to be with people that care and understand.'
The Bracken Trust is a day centre based in Powys that provides support and complementary therapies for people with cancer and other long term illnesses.
Visiting the centre, Cath Lindley, General Manager for Macmillan Cancer Support in Wales, said:
'This new Macmillan information and support centre will be a vital source of support for people affected by cancer in Powys. Patients and their families will be able to access good quality information and support closer to home without having to travel such long distances.
'Having cancer can make people feel very alone and isolated especially in rural areas like Powys. Therefore, this centre, and the support that will be provided is vitally important and I’m extremely proud that Macmillan has been able to make such a substantial investment in the area.'
Reg Cawthorne, Chairman of the Bracken Trust said:
'A diagnosis of cancer can be devastating and this is where the Bracken Trust can really help and make a difference. Our vision is of a holistic approach to cancer, supporting the orthodox medical care provided through the NHS, with counselling, nutritional advice, complementary therapies and self-help techniques.
'We are absolutely delighted with our partnership with Macmillan, as this is already enhancing the information and support that we offer to our patients and their families. We are extremely pleased with the extended and refurbished premises and this will allow us to offer this support to, unfortunately, an increasing number of people affected by cancer.'
In addition to the investment at The Bracken Trust, Macmillan, in partnership with Powys County Council, has invested in a Specialist Social Worker and Welfare Benefits Adviser. Both will be based part time at the Bracken Trust.
The centre is part of a £3.3 million pound investment by Macmillan on clinical and support services in Wales. In addition to the centre at Llandrindod, Macmillan is funding a state of the art Cancer Unit at the Prince Charles Hospital, which opens this summer. It will provide vital chemotherapy treatment and support for patients in Merthyr, the Cynon Valley, south Powys and north Caerphilly.