Peterborough mum of four who is fighting cancer thanks charity for vital grant

Charlene Martin pictured with children Tyler and Ava
Charlene Martin pictured with children Tyler and Ava

A Peterborough mum of four who is fighting cancer has spoken of her gratitude after being given a vital grant from a charity.

Charlene Martin, 33-year-old mother of four from Peterborough said: “We received a grant for £400. The money went towards a new washing machine and tumble dryer. With a family of six and chemo it was a massive help for us. It meant school uniforms and football kits were quicker to do.”

Around £36,300 in Macmillan grants helped people with cancer in Cambridgeshire to pay for heating or clothing as having cancer can mean you feel the cold more or may be spending more time at home between treatments.

And approximately £23,200 was given to people with cancer who were struggling to cover the cost of travelling to and from their appointments with costs that could not be reclaimed through their hospital.

The grants also covered the costs of other essentials to help manage the impact of their cancer, such as beds, chairs, kitchen appliances and washing machines.

Charlene added: “When you have chemo, you feel drained for days afterwards. I didn’t have the energy to be hanging out washing every night. When the kids came home on a Friday, they’d need their uniforms cleaning over the weekend, so the new tumble dryer was a big help.

“I initially heard about the Macmillan grants through the Macmillan community nurses at the Woodlands Macmillan centre at Hinchingbrooke Hospital. They brought me the paperwork and helped with my application. I’ve since received help from the Macmillan benefits advisor at the centre.”

Four in five people living with cancer experience a financial impact. The average is £570 a month.

Increased costs can happen because people with cancer’s income goes down while their costs for things such as heating and travelling to hospital for treatment goes up.

Gwyneth Tyler, Head of Services (South & East) for Macmillan Cancer Support, said: “Half of us will get cancer at some point in our lives so I’m pleased Macmillan awarded around £881,300 in grants last year to ease the money worries of people with cancer in the East of England.

“Cancer can affect so many parts of your life and our Macmillan grants, funded by our supporters, covered essentials from heating to travel costs for more than 2,400 people with cancer in the East of England in 2018[4] helping to make money one less worry.

“Grants are just one way Macmillan is there for people with cancer thanks to the public’s support and I’d urge anyone with cancer to get in touch to find out how we can support you.”

Macmillan offers grants to people with cancer who are struggling financially, have a limited income or savings.

To find out about the financial help Macmillan offers, call the Macmillan Support Line free on 0808 808 0000 or visit macmillan.org.uk/moneyworries.

Macmillan is funded almost entirely by donations and we can only fund grants thanks to our amazing supporters. Visit macmillan.org.uk/getinvolved today to donate or volunteer.