South Shields cancer survivor backs fundraising campaign

From left to right, the Lavender Lasses: Joanne Dix, Susan OBrien, Janet Bruce, Hilary Jago, Judith Copeland and Alex Watson.
From left to right, the Lavender Lasses: Joanne Dix, Susan OBrien, Janet Bruce, Hilary Jago, Judith Copeland and Alex Watson.

A cancer survivor from South Shields is urging people to put their kettle on – in a bid to help beat the disease for good.

Janet Bruce, 49, went through treatment for breast cancer after being diagnosed in 2013.

Janet Bruce has been given the all-clear, having been diagnosed with cancer in 2013.

Janet Bruce has been given the all-clear, having been diagnosed with cancer in 2013.

She has since been given the all-clear, and is backing a campaign by Cancer Research UK encouraging people to host fundraising coffee mornings.

Janet was 17 months into a three-year trip when she started to feel run down while in New Zealand in 2013.

She decided to head home for two months to rest before her next big adventure.

She found a lump in her left breast, and after being told she had cancer, had to abandon her world-round trip while she underwent chemotherapy, radiotherapy and check-ups.

My experience made me realise there is more to life than work and that you can’t take it too seriously

Janet Bruce

Now all clear, Janet – a former employee of tea-maker Twinings – is part of the Lavender Lasses fundraising group, which raises money for Cancer Research UK.

She said: “My experience made me realise there is more to life than work and that you can’t take it too seriously.

“It also made me see just how many people are affected by cancer.

“I wanted to do something to help as I was very aware how important research had been in my successful treatment and given my background in tea, encouraging people to make a cuppa seemed like an easy way to do it.

“Growing up I lived on the same street as some of the infamous South Shields cancer fundraisers the Dolly Mixtures, and had seen their fantastic work raising money and I wanted to do my bit to help.

“I am now a part of the Lavender Lasses raising money across the area for Cancer Research UK in our eye-catching corset and feather outfits!”

Janet is encouraging people to sign up to Cancer Research UK’s Coffee Morning this month to show how something as simple as taking a break for a cup of tea can help fund life-saving research.

She added: “I’m delighted to help launch Cancer Research UK’s Coffee Morning.

“It’s a simple, easy and fun way to raise money for research to help more people, like me, survive cancer.

“I’m urging everyone to take part – at home or work or school – to help make a difference.”

Cancer Research UK is encouraging people to sign up for a free fundraising pack and host a coffee morning any time until the end of May.

The free fundraising pack includes posters, balloons, recipe suggestions and fundraising ideas.

Lisa Millett, Cancer Research UK spokesperson for the North East, said: “SWe’d like to invite everyone across the region to host a coffee morning and help raise money by asking guests to make a donation in exchange for a cuppa, snack and chat.

“Every donation will help save lives by funding research that’s accelerating the charity’s progress in the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of cancer.”

For more information, visit www.cruk.org/coffeemorning