WHY We exist

When someone is diagnosed with breast cancer their whole world is turned upside down. They will likely undergo intensive treatment which can include major surgery, gruelling rounds of

chemotherapy and radiotherapy followed by years of taking hormonal medication. These forms of cancer treatment take their toll physically, emotionally, financially, and in other aspects of daily life.

For everyone a diagnosis of breast cancer means living with uncertainty.

Before, during and after treatment people often feel isolated and anxious about their future. During treatment they may also develop debilitating side-effects and symptoms which significantly undermine a person’s ability to live well with and beyond breast cancer.

This is where Breast Cancer Haven comes in. We exist to support anyone affected by breast cancer. We are the only charity that offers an in-depth, personalised programme of emotional, physical and practical support to help with side-effects and improve the quality of life.

Why do you say “affected by breast cancer”?

We say “affected by breast cancer” because we understand that the impact of breast cancer is not reserved for the person with the diagnosis. Family members and loved ones also need support at this time. We therefore offer support to all those affected.

If you have been affected by breast cancer and need support please contact us

WHAT WE DID

Breast Cancer Haven was founded by Sara Davenport in 1997. The idea for the charity came following the experience of a close family friend who was diagnosed with breast cancer.

Sara was concerned by the lack of emotional support and information available at that time to anyone diagnosed with the disease. Believing that “no-one should have to face breast cancer alone”, Sara sold her art business and put all of her energy into creating Breast Cancer Haven.

Prior to March 2020 people affected by breast cancer would visit one of our five welcoming support Centres based in South-West London, Leeds, Solihull, Hereford, and Titchfield, Hampshire or our two hospital-based outreaches in Worcester and North London.

These Centres, our Havens, were well appointed, peaceful and safe. They were designed to be tranquil spaces where visitors could relax, focus on putting their lives back together and meet others.

Our core provision was delivered through our free face-to-face support programme to people who were able to travel to one of our locations. This was made up of 12 hours of one-to-one appointment time and would include two hours with an experienced healthcare professional and up to 10 hours of intensive one–to-one therapy time.

Due to the impact of COVID-19 our Havens were closed, our fundraised income was greatly depleted, and the expense of running indefinitely closed buildings was not viable, nor deemed to be a worthy use of charitable funds

HOW THINGS HAVE CHANGED

We exist to support people affected by breast cancer. This hasn’t changed. It remains our sole purpose. Our vision is that “everyone affected by breast cancer gets the help they need”.

So as soon as we had to shut our buildings, we knew that we had to adapt. Within the first week of lockdown Breast Cancer Haven started to deliver online support services.

We now deliver one-to-one support sessions, healthy eating, exercise and stress reduction classes, and a range of self-help videos and resources. All of which can be accessed online.

Our reach now extends to provide support to people irrespective of geographic location.

We have worked hard to retain the feel of our services and continue to deliver tranquil, Haven-esque experiences which help to improve lives.

OUR MISSION

When your world has been turned upside down by breast cancer we provide personalised counselling and therapies to help put your life back together.

OUR values

We are authentic

Both our people and our services are trustworthy

We give accurate and reliable advice

We are always realistic about what is achievable

Our staff and therapists are fully trained and expert in their field

We are accessible

We never discriminate on who can access our services

Everyone in our workforce is approachable

We will produce information and advice that is easy to understand

We are compassionate

We connect and empathise with people

Everyone we come into contact with is treated with dignity

We are person-centred

We value every individual

All views are heard and respected

Click here to find out more about the current Breast Cancer Haven team

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Help us to support more people through the toughest times of their lives

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