Gloria’s Story

Gloria knows just how hard it is to go through the stress of a cancer diagnosis and treatment. After suffering her own diagnosis and subsequent treatment of Squamous Cell Carcinoma in her neck and throat 7 years ago, Gloria was in for a tough battle for her life and luckily came out the other side thanks to the support of her family and friends.

While in hospital, it struck her how many patients were undergoing treatment alone, often with no visitors or support to get them through this tough time. Having heard about the CanCare service during her time in hospital, and with her background working in women’s refuges, Gloria decided to become a volunteer to help those in need.

“I love to meet new people and listen to their stories, and it’s a privilege to be allowed into their lives at such a difficult time and be able to do anything I can to make this time easier for them,” says Gloria.

Gloria’s work with patients ranges from organising transport to the hospital to arranging accommodation, connecting them to support services and being there for moral support, talking on the phone or meeting up for a coffee.

“Sometimes just having someone sitting beside them, listening to them and showing that you’re there for them makes a huge impact in helping them get through this difficult time,” says Gloria.

The experience of helping her first patient, David, has always stayed with Gloria. David was diagnosed with stomach cancer that had metastasised and he required help arranging accommodation and food services. Most of all, he needed the social support to help him through his cancer battle.

David loved to talk with Gloria about his early life in Singapore and his family and culture and the two often texted and met for coffee, “David and I just clicked, he was a lovely person and I was glad to be able support him in some small way,” says Gloria.

Sadly, David suddenly passed away and Gloria was unable to say goodbye. Following his passing, David’s daughter sent Gloria a beautiful message, thanking her for everything she’d done to help her father though such a difficult time. But Gloria doesn’t do it for the thanks, saying “you do it because you can, it’s about being part of a community”.

Gloria continues to support her community through CanCare, helping patients as they face the challenge of their lives.

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