“When I first went to the Christie with Jon, it struck me what a lovely place it was. That might seem a strange thing to say about a hospital, especially one dealing with such serious illness, yet everyone there was there for the same reason, they were being treated, diagnosed, recovering etc.
As Jon’s treatment progressed and it became clear what a difficult place he was in, I made up my mind to do something that really mattered and try to make a difference to the sufferers of melanoma.
In April 2007, Melanoma UK inc Factor 50 was launched and has grown considerably. We have help and support from so many people, friends, family, patients, families of patients, the growth of Melanoma UK has been astonishing. I love the work this involves and it has gone far beyond what I ever imagined. The aim initally was to raise funds but we are now so much more than that. We give patients support and help raise awareness of this disease. We work closely with NICE and are part of the parliamentary melanoma task force. We make a real difference and we are very proud of that.
Skin cancer and melanoma affects families in a way you can’t imagine. After seeing how Jon and his family were affected, I knew we had to do something positive.”
Our mission statement :–
At Melanoma UK it is our challenge and desire to give patients and their families much needed support during the very difficult times faced upon diagnosis.
We aim to get them access to the best care available and support them throughout the journey.
Patients, families, carers and clinicians are at the heart of our work. We are passionate about our work and will work tirelessly to get results.
Mike Nuttall is heavily involved with Melanoma UK, through his support of his wife Gill. Mike said “We were all good friends with Jon and we miss him very much. I just knew that when Jon passed away, Gill would find something good from what had happened and she did. Melanoma UK is proof of what Jon meant to so many people and just how hard she has worked to take this further. I started off by doing the 3 Peaks challenge which was great fun.’
Before we met Jon, we didn’t know anyone with melanoma. Sadly, we now know of a lot of people but we hope that through our efforts we can make a difference. We train hard for the walks that we do, always aware of the dangers of the sun, the possibility of sun burn and skin cancer and we use high factor sun screens and cover up properly.
Andy Worthington has been friends with the Nuttall family for a long time. Andy’s niece had a melanoma removed a number of years ago. Andy decided to get involved with the group and is now a vital member of the team. “I didn’t really need much persuading to get involved. It was absolutely the right thing for me to do. Like Mike, I’ve done the 3 Peaks and am very involved in the events side of things, organising collections, quiz nights, golf days and 5 a side competitions. I’ve done the Manchester 10k to fundraise. Raising awareness of melanoma and funds to research better treatments has become an important part of my life” Andy forms an essential part of the team.
Joann Wheeldon is one of the support workers at Melanoma UK. Jo has personal experience of Melanoma, having lost her husband Terry to the disease in 2011. Jo is a vital part of the team at Melanoma UK, running a support group Life After Melanoma which she set up to support bereaved families. Whilst she concentrates a lot of her efforts in the support of others, Jo is still very much involved in fundraising and has done abseils, runs, walks etc and has attended many fund raising functions.