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Cymraeg

Research

Meet our Choir Members

There are hundreds of stories from across our choirs, from people who've felt the benefits of being a Sing with Us choir member. Here's just a few of them.

Meet Diane and Brian

Meet Diane and Brian from Bridgend

“We’ve been part of Tenovus Cancer Care’s Sing with Us choirs from the very beginning. I’m so proud to have been part of the first choir, and to have taken part in the saliva study.

When I was 50 my daughter was diagnosed with breast cancer. Just one month later I was too. We went through treatment together, but sadly my daughter’s cancer came back and she passed away. She was only 28 years old. I was told about a choir being set up in Pontypridd specifically for people affected by cancer, so I signed up. We moved to Bridgend so we now go to that choir, but we still have links to Pontypridd.

Singing in the choir is more than just enjoyment, it genuinely makes you feel better. The Choir Leaders play a huge part of course, but so does the support of the other choir members and the uplifting songs. You learn and enjoy at the same time.

The choir is a family, simple as that. You don’t have to talk about cancer or your loss, but if you do want to you know everyone there will understand. Having cancer and losing someone to cancer can be very isolating. Family don’t want to upset you by asking, and you don’t want to upset them by talking about it. So in the end you don’t talk about it, and that’s not healthy. With the choir, you can share experiences openly and that's hugely important.

Singing in the choir really does make you feel better. You have an endorphin rush! We all knew there were many benefits to singing, so it’s great that the research now backs this up.”

Meet Pauline

Meet Pauline Lawrence from Porthcawl

“I was diagnosed with inflammatory breast cancer in June 2011 and since then I’ve had chemotherapy, a mastectomy, lymph node removal, radiotherapy, Herceptin injections, and I now have lymphoedema treatment on one of Tenovus Cancer Care’s Mobile Support Units.

I was self-employed and had to wind down my business in just three weeks. The chemo made me too ill to work, and after the surgery I was very depressed. I felt I was one of the unlucky ones as I had lymphoedema as an immediate effect of the surgery. My confidence and sense of well-being were at rock bottom, I even stopped going out.

Up until I walked on to Tenovus Cancer Care’s Mobile Support Unit for my first lymphoedema treatment, I’d felt like a lump of meat, pushed and pulled through the NHS without regard for me as a person. When being treated over an eighteen month period it felt very impersonal and that made it difficult to stay hopeful.

I was at my lowest ebb, but I learned about the Tenovus Cancer Care Sing with Us choirs and I’m so glad I joined! Singing in the choir brought fun, hope, laughter, new people, joy and a challenge to my life! I’m almost glad I had cancer, because it means I’m now part of something so good."

Meet Anthea

Meet Anthea Parker from Cardiff

“My husband was diagnosed with cancer and died just three weeks later. It was a horrendous time, just before Christmas. We had no time to prepare, no time to say goodbye.

I joined the choir in the April after and when I walked in, I felt the empathy in the room.

It really does raise your spirits. The motivation I get from choir is amazing! From the moment you get there, you know everyone there understands what you’ve gone through – but nobody is miserable! We laugh all evening. The songs that the choir leaders choose are always uplifting. Even the more poignant songs have an uplifting message – reminding you that you’re not alone.

As well as singing, I also do a lot of fundraising for Tenovus Cancer Care. I threw myself into raising money as a way of dealing with my bereavement. Fundraising helps me, by helping other people. It makes me feel like I’m giving back to a charity that has helped me so much.

Tenovus Cancer Care is a pioneer in cancer research, from Tamoxifen to this amazing research into how singing makes us feel better. I never miss choir, never. I’ve made friends for life there.”

Watch Anthea and some of our other choir members talk about being part of a Sing with Us in our video.