Community First News & Updates

Macmillan Cancer Connections: Project Update

by | Jan 28, 2019 | Alex's Blog

With Christmas now a distant memory and the New Year well on it’s way I thought that this would be a great time to share with you a bit of a summary that I have put together to try and showcase the work that I have been doing up until now.

Wiltshire is home to around 253 Parishes that come in all different shapes and sizes.

When looking at Macmillan Cancer Connections I thought of the door knocking projects that I had done in different parishes across Wiltshire and how much they varied from each other. Each one has it’s own priorities and passions and this is something that I love about my job. For me it mimics people and how every person has their own experience and passions. Not everyone will be the same and not all solutions and ideas will be suited for each different community.

Four months into the project I have been able to listen to some truly wonderful individuals who have kindly shared their experiences and views with me. They have told me the positive experiences and have shared how they feel things could be changed for others facing similar circumstances.

We have welcomed Maggie Browne onto our Steering Group to act as a voice of experience- someone independent from our organisations. Maggie was kind enough to share a video on a previous blog earlier in the year and I am so pleased to see that she is keen to continue working with us on this project.

I also delivered a session to the Link Coordinators to hear about what services they knew of; and what services they felt were needed to support people in Wiltshire.

The people of Wiltshire have been fantastic both in sharing their stories and helping me to map out the great services that are going on to support people. This helps us to create a view of where gaps might be and how we can look at solutions that can be well suited to the communities.

I set myself the task of creating a visual map that could illustrate my findings that could be updated as I continue with the project. Drawing out 250+ parishes was no easy feat but really made me appreciate how vast our beautiful county is and how important it is that we reach as many people as possible within it.

The map has now started to come to life but I’d really love to hear from you to populate it more and of course, to hear about any ideas you might have …

With the help of the people and organisations that I have spoken with; I have also started to form a fabulous directory of services to accompany this map. If you’d like to know more please get in touch …

Until next time thank you to everyone who has shared with me and I look forward to speaking to more of you in the next few months… Happy New Year!


Macmillan Cancer Connections is a new project that aims to understand how rural isolation can affect the experience and wellbeing of people living with cancer in Wiltshire. Funded by Macmillan Cancer Support and delivered by Community First the project aims to identify the challenges people can face in accessing support and develop sustainable community-based solutions.

Macmillan and Community First – working together to improve cancer support in Wiltshire.

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