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Meet Jean

Jean Phillips

Jean’s husband Huw passed away in October 2014 after a five year battle with an extremely aggressive form of prostate cancer. The couple were founding members of the Sing with Us choir in Bridgend. Jean has been volunteering and supporting us since and is championing the choir and car raffle fundraising in Bridgend. 

Meet Jean:

"Huw and I were a close couple and when he was diagnosed in 2009 we were devastated. His prostate cancer was an extremely aggressive Gleason 9 and had spread to his bones before his diagnosis. By June 2014 we were told by a doctor at Y Bwthyn in Bridgend to prepare ourselves as Huw’s heart was weakening; it had been five years at this point and he passed away mid October 2014.

During almost all of this time he received dedicated support from a Welsh speaking Tenovus Cancer Care Support Line nurse called Diane, who made regular phone calls. For Huw being able to speak to his nurse in Welsh meant the world to him. He was able to ask her absolutely anything no matter how trivial it may have seemed and the very serious questions too. Diane would never rush the trivial questions or dwell on the serious issues and the two of them laughed a lot! She was a fount of knowledge and also supported me in my lonely role as his sole carer.

Tenovus Cancer Care were always there for the both of us. Huw and I were founding members of his beloved Sing with Us choir in Bridgend. We attended weekly for a dose of joy along with the unspoken support of the other members, the friendships and the fun we had there.

Huw told anyone who would listen about the choir and the consultant at Velindre believed he had lived for an extra three years due to his determination with the choir. Two weeks before Huw died our choir leader brought the choir outside of our house to sing for him as a gesture of the friendships he loved so much. They also sang at his funeral and all attended which meant the world.

I continue to have wonderful support from Tenovus Cancer Care and the other choir members. I’m Choir Champion and try to support new members, help to find possible gigs and arrange our social events. We have performed at Westminster and twice at the Senedd in Cardiff Bay, where we received compliments from the First Minister and our A.M.

I try to repay a little by volunteering for Tenovus Cancer Care because of everything they have done for Huw and I. I’ve helped with bucket collecting, sharing on social media and helping at events. More people are becoming aware of Tenovus Cancer Care's services and the support they can get including the Mobile Support Unit which comes to Bridgend weekly. Word is getting out there and I'm over the moon to have helped a little to spread it.

I’m volunteering as Raffle Champion for Bridgend County – there’s a chance for someone to win a brand new car! I’m asking businesses and local people to support Tenovus Cancer Care by buying tickets. 

On a personal level I have gained a lot from volunteering. I miss the love of my life dreadfully but it always feels like I'm doing it in his name as a thank you from us both. I know it's what he would have wanted.”

If you'd like to find out more about fundraising or volunteering email us at volunteer@tenovuscancercare.org.uk or call us on 029 2076 8850.

If you want to know more about any of our cancer support services, click here or call us on 0808 808 1010.