PEOPLE affected by cancer are being invited to join gentle walks around the Brighton by a team of Macmillan Horizon Centre volunteers.
Fergie Newman, is one of the Horizon Centre’s walking volunteers. He said: “I am a firm believer in the physical and mental benefits of exercise, so not just risk reduction, but also the management of symptoms because of the endorphins you release. It’s much better than sitting in an armchair!”
Like many people who volunteer for Macmillan, Fergie has been supported by Macmillan Cancer Support in the past. He said: “My grandson has leukaemia and has been through three and half years of treatment. Macmillan took away the worry of not being able to pay the mortgage for our family.”
Fergie was also diagnosed with bladder cancer himself nine years ago. “I had a lot of chemo two years ago. I’m not worried about it, not when you have the focus of a young child in the family going through treatment for so long for leukaemia,” he adds.
Brighton and Hove Council have run the Healthwalk Scheme for 14 years, but as Becky Walton, a volunteer co-ordinator explains they are now working in partnership with the Horizon Centre to help people affected by cancer.
“we offer a one-one scheme where people can say what they want to do and we match them. This can be a really gentle health walk or other activity. Some people need support to be able to access physical activity.”
Pete McLoughlin, who had treatment for prostate cancer in April last year has been on a couple of the walks. He said: “It’s really nice to explore the area on foot.
“I feel much better now than before I did the walks. A bit of exercise can do you the world of good. I didn’t actively seek support but I have found it so much easier to talk to someone who has had cancer. It would be great if we could get bigger groups because then it would be more sociable.”
The scheme does 18 regular walks all over the city, which are all circular and all on bus routes with café and toilet stops.
For more information about the walks or to sign up please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
To find out more about the Horizon Centre which is open Monday to Friday, 9am – 4.30pm and the range of support it can offer please visit www.macmillan.org.uk/horizoncentre or call 01273 468770 or call in BN2 5BD.