A NEW CALL service manned by volunteers who have experienced cancer has been set up to help patients with the disease combat loneliness in their recovery.

A number of cancer survivors, and people who have experienced cancer in their families, have registered to join the ‘Tele-Friend’ programme, launched by Tenovus Cancer Care.

The service will see volunteers make regular phone or video calls to those affected by cancer who may be experiencing loneliness due to having to isolate because of their condition.

One of the volunteers is 41-year-old Jenny Gregory, from Cwmbran, who lost her mum and dad to cancer.

After her mum’s death, Miss Gregory joined Tenovus Cancer Care’s Cwmbran Sing with Us choir, and believes that support network helped her through her dad’s diagnosis.

“My mum was diagnosed with cancer in 2009 and she died six weeks later,” she said. “I joined a Tenovus choir after that. It was amazing being around people who had been through the same thing.

“My dad was diagnosed with cancer in 2016, but this time, I had the support network of the choir.

“Tenovus had a similar call service with a doctor where my dad could just call someone to talk. When I saw this, it looked like a brilliant thing to be involved in.

“Obviously everyone’s experiences are different, but it makes such a difference when someone knows what you are going through. At choir, we don’t even talk about cancer, because we all already know.

“It is a frightening time for anyone affected by cancer, so it’s more important than ever to do everything we can to give hope and help people cope.

“Even just knowing someone cares or having that phone call to look forward to and having that routine is especially important for people these days.”

You can sign up for the programme at tenovuscancercare.org.uk/how-we-can-help-you/telefriend