Older People Living with Cancer

Peer advocates supporting older people affected by cancer

Sharing the cancer journey through music

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Dorset Cancer Advocacy brings together people affected by cancer to enable one to one peer support. Rising Voices choir in Poole brings together people of all ages living with cancer to create group peer support through song. When I visited in March the group had just returned from a trip where they were invited to perform in twin town Cherbourg. The woman beside me had never been in a choir before or even really had a hobby but three weeks after surgery for cancer she was determined to join the others on the ferry to France and be ready to sing. The performance coincided with a large cancer awareness and fundraising event that was taking place in the town and the choir members were very moved by the warm welcome they received.

The weekly choir practice led by Sarah McNaughton is informal and fun.  Sarah includes simple harmonies, rounds and songs from around the world.  Another member confessed she was terrified of singing in public but was gradually building her confidence and really looked forward to the session.  The midway tea break gives everyone a chance to mingle and get to know each other.  Friendship will most likely follow and with it the peer support that is so invaluable to people facing cancer.

The Rising Voices choir was set up by the Dorset Cancer Network.  You can’t visit without joining in so all together now…



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