'Radiotherapy & Me' will bring together people with lived experience of cancer and radiotherapy with researchers from the Manchester Cancer Research Centre to raise awareness of radiotherapy and research through the sharing of personal stories.

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What’s it like to have radiotherapy? How does it affect you and the people around you?

Since January 2019, patients based in Oldham have been taking part in creative workshops as part of the Radiotherapy and Me project. People who have experienced radiotherapy treatment for cancer have been working with artists to tell their stories through spoken word, visual arts and poetry. The aim of the project is to raise awareness of radiotherapy as a modern treatment for cancer, and overcome any fears and anxieties around it.

The participants are now ready to share their stories and you’ve invited. The drop-in event and exhibition is taking place at Oldham Library, Saturday 13 April, 11am to 4pm. You’ll be able to hear the stories and find out more about radiotherapy and research. Artists from Contact (arts and theatre organisation) will also be on hand to help you tell your own story.

The project is led by The Public Programmes Team, radiotherapy researchers at the NIHR Manchester Biomedical Research Centre (BRC) and creative practitioners Nathaniel Hall and Lara Veitch, herself a former radiotherapy patient.

Jackie Walsh took part in the workshops and is a former radiotherapy patient at The Christie centre at The Royal Oldham Hospital. She said:

“At the start of the project, I was way out of my comfort zone. I don’t really see myself as an arts and crafts type but I’ve really enjoyed this and I’ve also benefited from hearing everyone else’s stories.”

“I hope that our stories will take away the fears that people may have about the treatment. It’s good for people to hear about radiotherapy from people who have experienced it as well as the health professionals.”

Professor Ananya Choudhury, Chair and Honorary Consultant in Clinical Oncology at The Christie, runs radiotherapy clinics at The Royal Oldham Hospital. She said:

“Radiotherapy is a vital treatment - around half of cancer patients who are cured receive radiotherapy as part of their treatment. We want to raise awareness of radiotherapy, as well as the research we are doing to improve the treatment’s benefits and minimise side effects.”

“We believe a really powerful way to engage people is through the first-hand stories of patients who have received radiotherapy.”

Everyone welcome, no need to book. Refreshments provided.

For more information on the event and accessibility click here or email Paolo Arru at paolo.arru@mft.nhs.uk or phone/text 0161 276 6614 / 07816 447520.


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