As is customary, Cherry Lodge Cancer Care’s AGM on 16th May 2017 was followed by a talk on a topic linked to the charity’s work to provide information and support to people affected by cancer.
Our speaker this year was Isaac Oppong, one of the trainers on the ‘Move4You Cancer Activity Programme’. This programme is part of Tottenham Hotspur Foundation’s work to improve the physical health and mental wellbeing of people in its local communities, including Barnet. It is delivered by Tottenham Hotspur Foundation in conjunction with Macmillan Cancer Support and also receives funding from the National Lottery. The name ‘Move4You’ was adopted to replace the previous name of ACE (After Cancer Exercise) in acknowledgement of the programme’s usefulness for people still undergoing treatment.
Isaac was thanked by Fiona for stepping in at short notice to replace the originally announced speaker, who is unwell. It is difficult to imagine a more enthusiastic speaker. Isaac clearly loves his work for Tottenham – despite not being a footballer himself and, even more surprisingly, being a committed fan of Arsenal FC! After a short introduction, Isaac showed us a film about the work of Move4You. The film concentrated on the story of an individual client who joined the programme at Tottenham Green after being diagnosed with prostate cancer. He told us that the 12-week exercise programme had had a huge impact, bringing about ‘a resurgence’ in his life and giving him a strength that ‘might not have been there before’.
The Move4You programme is open to anyone who has had a diagnosis of cancer in the last five years and is aged 18 or above, a resident of Barnet, Enfield, Haringey or Islington, and registered with a GP. Isaac urged people to sign up for the programme of 12 weekly sessions, which are led by specialist cancer physical activity instructors who will support you step by step. The activities are designed to help you move more during and after treatment and are personalised to accommodate people of all abilities and conditions. There is a strong emphasis on raising energy levels – something as basic as enabling someone to get up out of a chair can clearly make a huge difference. Some people choose to have one-to-one sessions with a ‘personal trainer’ whilst others prefer to join classes tailored to meet their needs. Venues include Barnet Copthall Leisure Centre and Barnet Hospital.
Several members of Cherry Lodge have already taken part in Move4You and their feedback has been extremely positive. If you are interested in joining, our nurses, Fiona or Kirsty, will be happy to provide further information, give you the very straightforward application form and make the necessary referral.
Isaac’s presentation ended with a very informative question and answer session, after which he was warmly thanked by Fiona. Attendees then had time to chat and enjoy the refreshments, which had been organised by Yvonne.