07th December 2023
Winners of the Health Improvement Award 2023
Health Improvement Award winners - Jan Sheward, Dwayne Clevett and the Cancer United team
A unique West Sussex cancer support charity has been praised for its work at this year’s Sussex Sport & Physical Activity Awards.
Cancer United offers help and support to improve the physical and mental wellbeing of those with cancer from diagnosis onwards, inspiring them to embrace the things they can do and to refuse to be defined by what they can’t.
In recognition of its work, Jan Sheward, Dwayne Clevett and the Cancer United team were named as the Health Improvement Award winners.
Jan said: “When we started Cancer United we realised the impact of exercise on the physical and mental wellbeing of patients is clear.
“You can see very quickly the difference it is making. We are a small team but we do so much.”
She added: “Winning the Health Improvement Award illuminated the remarkable journey Cancer United has undertaken over the past 12 years.
“To hear our nomination was very emotional for our team as they work tirelessly every day dedicating themselves to ensuring the benefits and support we offer to those affected by cancer really do make a meaningful and positive impact on their mental and physical wellbeing.
“Being nominated itself was an immense privilege, but to be selected as the winners among a plethora of exceptional individuals and organisations made the occasion truly extraordinary for us.”
Cancer United provides a variety of sessions from the specialist cancer gym and fitness centre in Angmering, helping to improve the lives of those living with cancer.
Sessions include the likes of Nordic walking, cycling, seated sessions, and pilates, with hundreds of engaged participants taking part either face-to-face or dialling in virtually.
The charity delivers a programme in hospital settings called CU on the Ward, which is a tailored exercise programme created and produced by a cancer specific trained exercise specialist.
This helps patients increase activity levels while in hospital, helping to enhance the speed of their recovery and reduce the amount of time spent in hospital.
In addition, there are some wards where instructors are visiting the ward to support patients with the videos and provide 121 instructions.
As well as offering sport and physical activity sessions, Cancer United have a choir and facilitates social events, to provide opportunities for social connection and to join the community.
Cancer United delivers a Level 4 cancer qualification, which is an all-encompassing, science-based cancer exercise training initiative designed to support exercise professionals to gain the skills, knowledge and behaviours required to practise competently in a range of activity settings with cancer patients.