Since 2020, I have got involved in a variety of volunteering roles with Lymphoma Action. Following an invitation from Lymphoma Action's Karen Bonell, I started out by facilitating Online Special Focus Meetings and joining the team of moderators who oversee the day to day running of the Closed Facebook Support Group. Later that year, I was more than happy to help out further becoming a volunteer Buddy
I find my 'lived' experience (along with many other volunteers') can be the right information at the right time for many people who find themselves floundering in the storm of diagnosis and treatment.
The very supportive Facebook Group is a simple but rather amazing way to share my 23 years' experience of living with Cutaneous T-Cell lymphoma (Mycosis Fungodes), to help others who were embarking on treatment, in treatment and post treatment. It's wonderful to see the burden lighten as group members support each other and we walk the journey with them. This makes volunteering for me very encouraging and satisfying.
A group member once told me: “Mike, your replies and lived experiences have been like you giving my family gold and I have nothing to give you in return.” This is what volunteering for Lymphoma Action and more specifically on the Facebook Group is all about; being able to make a positive contribution to someone’s challenging journey.
Lymphoma Action is a true shining light for raising awareness of lymphoma. The more we can get the message out about lymphoma, the more understanding there will be about it as the 5th most common cancer in the UK.
If you're thinking of volunteering with Lymphoma Action, there is a place for everyone to get involved from raising money that helps the charity continue to develop its work, raising awareness and campaigning in your local area or workplace, to providing support. You will not regret giving a small amount of time that makes a very big difference.