Twenty-one years ago, Mary Brennan underwent successful treatment for two types of cancer – breast and lymphoma – at the age of 45.
She received excellent support in hospital butfelt lonely and isolated at home, so after she recovered she wanted to do something to help people in a similar situation. Her dream came true in 2000 with the launch of Barnoldswick and Earby Bosom Friends, with the stated aim “to offer a helping hand and a listening ear to anyone affected by cancer.”
Since then, Mary’s group, a registered charity since 2002, has gone on to raise more than £250,000, allowing them to extend the support offered to lots of people, not just from Barnoldswick and Earby but also in Pendle, Craven and the Ribble Valley area.
Bosom Friends not only offer telephone support to sufferers but also do home and hospital visits. They hold fun social evenings every month and there are peer support meetings for people who want slightly more structured help. The funds they raise also go to helping patients with practical help and sometimes living expenses, but also to giving them much needed treats and experiences.
The group has always been well supported, with many groups and individuals involved in countless fund-raising efforts, and has a dedicated band of volunteers many of whom now help out in the Bosom Friends Charity Shop which opened in 2011.
You can help support Bosom Friends by calling at the shop, 2 Ellis Street, Barnoldswick, phone 07415 618843 or 01282 814917, or www.bebosomfriends.co.uk