Janet Whitney from Adamstown, Co. Wexford was diagnosed with cancer three days before Christmas in 2006. What followed was a lumpectomy, then forty sessions of radiotherapy at Waterford Regional Hospital. It was a nurse at the hospital who referred Janet to the Solas Centre which gave her “a lifeline.”
In an interview with Beat 102-103’s Zara King, Janet recalls how cancer affected her life. “After I was diagnosed with cancer I discovered two things; prayer and the Solas Centre.”
“At the time, I was in a state, as anyone would be who had just been diagnosed with cancer, but when the nurse at WRH put me in touch with the Solas Centre, it became my lifeline and helped me so much.”
Of the Solas Centre, Janet says “The Solas Centre was a place where I could be by myself. Obviously when your family and friends hear you are diagnosed with cancer they are devastated for you and for themselves, so the Solas Centre was somewhere I could get the space I needed.”
“When I was travelling daily from Wexford to Waterford for radiotherapy I was desperately lonely, but when I went to the Solas Centre there was someone there to talk to, or not if that’s what I wanted.”
“Whilst the medical system is good and the cancer services are really good, there is nothing in place to help you mentally cope with cancer and that’s where the Solas Centre helped me so much.”
Janet is encouraging anyone who can to take part in the Solas Centre Run for Life which takes place on Sunday, October 13th. “By taking part in the Run for Life this year you are going to help someone in a way you may not have thought of before. For me it provided a neutral space, but it also provided so many great services such as massage and art therapy and I made so many friends there.”
Every year across Waterford, Wexford, Tipperary, Carlow and Kilkenny 2,000 people are diagnosed with cancer. That is why the organisers are hoping to garner the support of at least 2,000 participants to take part in aid of the Solas Centre.
“Cancer has changed my life. I have reprioritised so many things. I am no longer complacent about the things in my life and I value my family, my work, everything I have and no longer sweat the small stuff anymore” said Janet.
According to Dr. Brian Creedon, Chairman South Eastern Cancer Foundation, people like Janet have made the Solas Centre the haven it is today.
“We are delighted to be in a position to provide the crucial services that make living with cancer easier. Janet, by availing of the support services at the Solas Centre has discovered that there is a place to go, a place to talk, a place to just be and that’s vital to anyone affected by cancer.”
“However, without the continuing support and generosity of the people from Wexford and the South East, the Solas Centre would not be in a position to provide the best cancer support services to those who have been diagnosed with cancer.”
“So please dust off your runners and if you can run, jog or walk the Run for Life.
All monies raised go directly to the Solas Centre and provide support, counselling and therapy to the 2,000 people who are diagnosed across the region each and every year.”
The Solas Centre is delighted to welcome new sponsors, Eishtec and acknowledged the continuing support of Beat 102-103.
If you want to take part in this year’s South East Run For Life, which takes place on Sunday, October 13th, sponsorship cards are available from the Solas Centre at Williamstown, Waterford or you can visit www.solascentre.ie, Beat 102 103 studios and AIB branches.
For further information contact the Solas Centre on 051 304604 or check out the ‘Solas Centre South East Run for Life’ Facebook page.