Friday 1st July 2016
Mac Voice, the magazine for Macmillan professionals: Summer 2016
Lynn Tanner MBE, one of our active Alumni Ambassadors, writes about how she has continued making a difference since retirement.
I worked as a Macmillan community nurse in Herefordshire for ten years. The role was very new at that time, and required much bridge-building with GPs and district nurses.
My Macmillan role involved much more learning and development than other nursing roles I had experienced. Macmillan was particularly helpful in that way – providing plenty of information, and weekend seminars where we could network and learn from each other.
After retiring, I decided to become an Alumni Ambassador to give something back. The skills I can offer are mainly based on my past roles, the ability to mix with new people, and my experiences since retiring. These include holding many Chair roles including the third-sector County Voluntary Council, Aneurin Bevan Community Health Council, Torfaen Committee, Torfaen and Blaenau Gwent Mind and Torfaen Libraries Health and Wellbeing Service.
I am currently involved with a service called Care Homes Ask and Talk (CHAaT) in conjunction with Aneurin Bevan Health Board. The project was set up following a BBC Panorama programme on Winterbourne, Bristol, where residents were treated horrifically. The service is made up of retired NHS professionals. We visit care homes to meet residents under the My Home Life Cymru scheme. Residents can talk to us in confidence about any concerns, but they also have many positive stories about staff which can help us celebrate success and share best practice. I also sit on the interviewing panel for band 5 nurses. In June 2015, I was awarded an MBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List, for voluntary service to the community in Torfaen.
As part of the Alumni, I have written a blog, and spoken at a fundraising concert and the Henry Garnett Award ceremony. All of this has strengthened my connection with Macmillan. I recently met with the local Macmillan fundraising manager to discuss how I could help by collecting cheques or speaking to groups.
I feel very proud of Macmillan’s achievements. Its influence is spreading so widely, improving lives for people it comes into direct contact with and even those it doesn’t – as the work done in one area can benefit so many other areas. It was very pleasant to meet with other Alumni members at the first Alumni congress last year. It felt good to ‘be with your own kind’.
I feel the contribution of Macmillan to people affected by cancer is amazing, and if I can help, then I’m happy to.
Are you interested in continuing to make a difference to the lives of people affected by cancer by becoming an Alumni member or Ambassador? You can choose the activities and projects you’d like to do, and give as much or as little time as you want. You can also opt out of the scheme at any time. Email to find out more.