Life-saving charity wins £10,000 to help funds its health screening programme

Jane Goossens discovered she had a kidney tumour thanks to health screening at the Mary How Trust
Jane Goossens discovered she had a kidney tumour thanks to health screening at the Mary How Trust

Life-saving work being done by the Mary How Trust for Cancer Prevention has been given a huge boost with £10,000 funding from the Big Lottery Fund.

The award launches Phase Two of the charity’s anniversary appeal, backed by this newspaper, asking people to donate ‘£30 for 30 years’.

The trust is seeking to raise £30,000 to cover a year’s worth of laboratory supplies – essential for the blood analysis at the heart of the charity’s health screening service which helps people across the area.

Fundraising manager Roanne Moore says: “It is a great honour to receive this award, and we’re deeply grateful to the Big Lottery Fund and everyone in the community who plays the National Lottery.

“With the support of the local community and the Big Lottery Fund, we can give local families a healthier future. What could be better!”

The Mary How Trust offers health screenings to spot the early signs of cancer and other serious illnesses. It welcomes men and women from all walks of life and, instead of a fee, asks for donations based on ability to pay.

Phase One of the charity’s ‘£30 For 30 Years’ anniversary appeal has already raised an amazing £30,000 to purchase a new ultrasound machine.

Phase Two will focus on raising the money needed to supply the blood laboratory, which costs £30,000 every year to run. The facility means the charity can analyse test samples quickly and accurately, but the demand for its service is growing, and the cost of diagnostic supplies is rising.

The Pulborough-based charity set up in 1988 in memory of Mary How, who died from bowel cancer aged 46 - earlier detection and treatment of the disease could have saved her life.

Its work is entirely funded by the community.

To apply for a screening or make a donation, visit www.maryhowtrust.org

Jane’s story:

Jane Goossens from Worthing discovered she had a kidney tumour thanks to screening done by the Mary How Trust.

She said: “I had just returned from Tenerife when I found out that I had a spherical mass growing on my left kidney. This was discovered during my health screening at the Mary How Trust.’’

After a CT scan at Worthing hospital the consultant confirmed it was a tumour, and he was 85 per cent sure that it was cancerous.

“I felt fear on hearing this, as my Mum died at a very young age – only 29! – from cancer. I thought, ‘This is probably how I am going to go’.

“During the time leading up to my operation I was very worried.

“I had two dreams - in the first I was told that I would be going on a little journey. It gave me the feeling that everything may turn out to be alright in the end. In the second, I dreamed that a friend who had passed away from cancer was trying to reassure me.

“A few weeks after the operation to remove my kidney, I was told the tumour was in fact benign. I was so relieved it was not kidney cancer.

“Thanks to the Mary How Trust, I can now concentrate on my new holiday business that I am running with my partner.”