How we support your group

Our grants, resources and training courses are here to help with running self help and support groups. 

We offer:

  • Supporting You to Help others grant to help start and develop a group
  • Training to help your group develop and to make positive changes to it
  • Free and downloadable resources to help those who are setting up or running a group with a range of issues, from promoting a group, to legal issues.

Who to contact for more advice 

Macmillan's Involvement Coordinators can provide advice, information, support and training and tell you how to apply for grants to help develop your group. Find your local coordinator here.

What can I get a grant for?

Our Supporting You to Help Others Grant Programme helps give people affected by cancer the opportunity to use their experiences to support others, while also receiving support themselves.  We especially welcome applications that contribute to achieving Macmillan’s Inclusion vision of a health and social care system where equal access to, and delivery of the best cancer services are available to everyone living with and beyond cancer.

The grants we offer:

  • Start up funds - to support the start up of a new self-help and support project for people affected by cancer.
  • Development funds  - to support the ongoing activities and development of self-help and support projects for people affected by cancer.
  • User Involvement Grants - to encourage the involvement of people affected by cancer in the design and improvement of cancer services.
  • Individual Development Grants - to enable people affected by cancer to develop their skills and use their cancer experience to help support others.

Who can apply?

Grants are awarded to projects and activities across England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. We welcome applications from:

  • Individuals or groups of people affected by cancer
  • Organisations and professionals working in partnership with people affected by cancer.

Where can I find out more?

You can find out more about the grants and how to apply by downloading our guidance notes [PDF] and application form as a PDF or Word document.

Your local Macmillan Involvement Co-ordinator (MIC) can provide advice, information, support and training and tell you how to apply for grants to set up or develop your group. Your application will also need to be discussed and signed off by your MIC prior to submission, so please contact them at your earliest opportunity. Find your nearest MIC.

Deadlines for applying for a grant

The dates for 2016 are set out below. Unfortunately, due to the number of applications received, we are unable to accept forms after the deadline.

Application deadline

Grant panel meeting

Decision issued

Round one26 February6 April22 April
Round two13 May15 June

1 July

Round three22 July2 September

21 September

What kind of training and courses are on offer?

Macmillan offers a number of training opportunities to help you and your group develop and make positive changes. We aim to bring people together to share experiences and to help them obtain practical and emotional support.

All workshops are free to attend. For a full list of courses and course dates, visit our teaching resource website LearnZone or email

Handbook for self-help and support groups

This brand new resource is designed for anyone who is setting up or running a support group. It covers everything from forming a committee to promoting your group – and it also includes lots of handy information about legal issues, money matters and training opportunities. This handbook replaces the previous Good Practice Guidelines.

Download the handbook here, or order your free copy from be.Macmillan.

Order free resources, leaflets, posters and flyers

Did you know you can order all of our resources, publications and leaflets for free from be.Macmillan? You can also create posters, flyers and other materials to help advertise your group. Visit be.Macmillan to find out more.

Back to Find groups and talks near you

What to expect from a group

Cancer support groups give you the chance to talk to others who can understand what you are going through.

How to start your own group

Self help and support groups bring people together to offer mutual support. If you're thinking of starting your own support group, Macmillan can help with advice, training and start-up grants.

Find groups near you

Macmillan supports more than 900 independent cancer support groups and organisations across the UK. If you need to talk about your cancer experience, you can find one near you.