Our Ambassadors share their experiences and personal stories of how they became Ambassadors for Cancer Campaigns.
Rosa Macpherson (Ambassador for Ochil and South Perthshire)
Rosa is a cancer survivor, and became an Ambassador because she wanted to make her experiences with cancer meaningful. She feels she has learnt and developed many new skills, such as negotiating and lobbying.
Alan Peace (Ambassador for South Staffordshire)
Alan wanted to take his support one step further. “I’ve been fundraising for Cancer Research UK since 2004 but I began to realise that the way to actually make a difference in terms of Cancer Research wasn’t just with fundraising but at the political interface, that’s where the decisions were taken.”
Jan Sheward (Ambassador for Arundel and South Downs)
Jan is a breast cancer survivor. During this time she wanted to get involved in the fight against cancer, by supporting our campaigns and getting involved with the local community. She is passionate about you joining the Ambassador family!
Elizabeth Bailey (Ambassador for Luton South)
Elizabeth wanted to turn her negative cancer experience into a positive one. During her time as an Ambassador she has developed many professional skills, and is able to carry important political messages into her local constituency and maintain a dialogue with her MP.
Duncan Baird (Ambassador for Cardiff South & Penarth)
Duncan is a Cancer Research UK funded scientist based in Cardiff University. He has attended Lobbies, and delivered petitions as an Ambassador. After one Lobby, he came away with a different perspective of how policy is determined.
Jim Richardson (Ambassador for Hexham)
Jim is a lung cancer survivor and became an Ambassador to help with our campaign for standard cigarette packs, a subject close to his heart; giving future generations one less reason to start smoking in the first place.
“In 2010, my GP told me some life-shattering news - I had an inoperable lung cancer. I knew my smoking (I started at age 16) had almost certainly caused this.
The toughest day of my life was sitting my children down and telling them I had lung cancer.
I had chemotherapy and radiotherapy, and to my absolute joy and gratitude, the treatment seems to be working. I feel that I’ve been given a second chance.”
Penny Christophe (Ambassador for Bromley and Chislehurst)
Penny became an Ambassador in late 2010. Her cousin was suffering from his third round of cancer and she had lost five other relatives to the disease, so was keen to get involved.
“No two days are the same as an Ambassador. The time commitment is flexible, but I have found myself becoming busier as my passion for the charity has developed. One day I might write to or meet decision makers (both locally and nationally), liaise with my local press to publicise our campaigns or travel to a volunteer’s conference to make a speech about life as an Ambassador. I’ve also got to go to Parliament to lobby with fellow Ambassadors, and visit the labs to see research first hand.
All of this is done in my spare time, built around my full time job and my life with my loved ones. I have been lucky enough to take part in some incredible campaigns with some incredible people, and see laws change and real progress made. We are making a difference and that is a wonderful feeling.”
David Collins (Ambassador for Heywood and Middleton)
David is an ex-policeman and is convinced that with the right political support we will beat cancer.
“I didn’t know anything about Cancer Campaigns Ambassadors until I saw a link in a newsletter. After being accepted, my first Ambassador ‘assignment’ was attending the 2012 Westminster lobby and speaking to an MP who supported smoking in pubs.
Being an Ambassador I’ve had the opportunity to meet with MPs, doctors, scientists and cancer survivors. This has given me a clearer understanding of why political lobbying is so important. I have learned that just because an MP commits to beat cancer, we cannot assume every aspect of our campaigns will be supported. Ambassadors are a vital resource in providing fact-based evidence to MPs, and I am immensely proud to be part of that process.”
Justine Sheils (Ambassador for Sefton Central)
Justine joined the Ambassador programme in 2010, wanting to share her story of skin cancer to help improve laws around sunbed-use.
“In January 2010, I spoke to MPs in Westminster for the launch of the Sunbeds Bill. This encouraged me to apply to be an Ambassador, and later the same year I returned to Parliament to call for specific early diagnosis measures for cancer.
I’ve also done a lot of media work - my story has featured on local and national television, radio stations, in newspapers and magazines including GMTV (now Daybreak), BBC and Channel 4. I also featured in a documentary Nicola Roberts from Girls Aloud was involved in.”
Become an Ambassador
We're always looking for more Ambassadors across the UK to help us with our exciting campaigns. Could you be one of the faces of our Ambassador programme?