For Lydia Brain, persuading just one person to go to their GP with their symptoms is the true reward of being a cancer champion
For Lydia Brain, being diagnosed with cancer was the spur that drove her to help other young people with similar experiences.
The diagnosis of an extremely rare form of cancer of the uterus came as a complete shock but it prompted a burst of energy that she hopes will help other patients, particularly women and young people.
She started a blog that charts her own experiences and offers advice and insight. She joined the charity Trekstock, which supports people in their 20s and 30s who are facing cancer, and she also helps with campaigns and fundraising for the charity GRACE, which funds research into gynaecological cancers.
Lydia, 25, is also a Cancer Champion and has joined the growing numbers of people who are fighting back against cancer in Greater Manchester.
She said: ‘I found that there wasn’t a great deal of support for people of my age. The type of cancer I had was more common in children and older people and there wasn’t a great deal of guidance for people like me.’
A friend urged her to become a Cancer Champion and she now says: ‘‘Ideally, I’d like to promote cervical cancer screening. It’s aimed at all women aged 25 but a lot don’t take it up because of embarrassment. I’d like to help overcome that embarrassment.
‘I have enjoyed every second of being a cancer champion. I am now fully committed to championing the cause, and plan to never stop…’