Successful year for Lewis and Harris Breast Cancer Support Group

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The highlight of the last year for the Lewis and Harris Breast Cancer Support Group (LHBCSG) was during Breast Cancer Awareness Month in October, when Scottish celebrity Michelle McManus launched awareness events and helped to spread the message of the importance of checking your breasts.

The Lewis and Harris Breast Cancer Support Group (LHBCSG) held their Annual General Meeting on April 17, 2013, in the Bays of Harris Community Centre, when members discussed progress made over the past year, and elected new office bearers.

In welcoming the large number of members attending, Mary MacLeod, Convenor, reported on the changes and challenges the Group has faced in the 15 years since its formation in 1998. However, these changes and challenges have been coped with and the Group continues to provide the support and information necessary for its members.

Achievements over 2012 included the launch of the new LHBCSG website in March 2012 (which can be accessed at www.lhbcsg.org); participation in the Scottish Government’s ‘Detect Cancer Early Campaign’ with NHS Western Isles; and ‘Health and Wellbeing’ courses, ‘Looking Forward’ courses and Breast Health Promotion Workshops held throughout the year.

Mary MacLeod commented: “The highlight of the year was during Breast Cancer Awareness Month when the Group’s Breast Cancer Awareness event was launched in Stornoway by the well-known celebrity Michelle McManus. The event, which was opened by the NHS Western Isles Chief Executive Gordon Jamieson, attracted over 100 women, including pupils from the Nicolson Institute, Shawbost School and Lews Castle College. All attendees took advantage of the opportunity to learn how to be breast aware and the importance of self-checking. Other Breast Awareness events and Pink Days took place during October and we give thanks to all those who raised money for the Group.”

The chair of the Harris Sub-Group, Marion Morrison, reported on the progress of the sub-group which continues to thrive. Meetings are held monthly in the Bays Centre and their fund-raising is quite healthy.

President, Hazel Hebditch, Breast and Lymphoedema Nurse, reported on the benefits of having supports groups in Lewis and Harris and commented on the good work being done in both areas.