A teen who struggles to talk after cancer surgery has praised the charity which helped her face the future.
Young Shannon Hawthorn’s confidence plummeted after two ops on her neck left her scarred and so hoarse people could barely hear her.
She was forced to miss eight weeks of classes, her school prom and a family holiday. And she was worn out by the time she sat her GCSEs alone in the school library.
But she felt less isolated after confiding in a Teenage Cancer Trust nurse who discussed her fears and helped her meet other teens in the same position.
Shannon, from Barrowford, Lancs, said: “The nurse specialist listened to my worries and gave me some great advice. We talked about how I felt about my body post-surgery and treatment.”
Shannon was 15 when she was diagnosed with thyroid cancer and later underwent two ops at Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital.
In October she was admitted to a Teenage Cancer Trust Unit at the city’s renowned Christie Hospital.
Now 16, she said: “The unit is unlike any hospital I’ve ever seen. It was relaxing and homely and the staff make your stay bearable. It really helped raise my spirits.”
This Christmas the Sunday Mirror is asking readers to donate to the Teenage Cancer Trust, which has helped thousands of young people by providing age-specific nurses.
It costs £30 an hour to fund a nurse specialist, and £25 for a youth support co-ordinator.
How to donate
Teenage Cancer Trust is the only UK charity meeting the need for specialised nursing and emotional support for 13 to 24-year-olds.
But currently it can only help half of young people with cancer. It needs your support to maintain 28 units and fund specialist staff.
And the charity needs to fund an outreach service to help young people unable to access a unit. It costs £25 to fund a youth support co-ordinator for just one hour.
These experts help young people share their experiences and fears.
To fund a nurse specialist for one hour, providing direct and age-specific care, costs £30.
Whether you can give £2.50 or £25, £30 or £3, your donation will help the Teenage Cancer Trust #GiveAnHour of support.
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