We recognise that attending an event with people that you have never met before, discussing something as personal as an ovarian cancer diagnosis, can be intimidating. We often hear from women who say that they were nervous before an event, but that with hindsight there was no reason to be!
We have compiled a list of frequently asked questions to convey how relaxed, enjoyable and inspirational our support events are.
1. What can I expect from a Being Together day or Supporting You event?
We hold five or six events a year across the UK and each one is slightly different, but all aim to give you the chance to meet other women, find out about the support available to you and attend workshops surrounding living well. Event size varies, on average about 25 women and several guests attend.
Women are welcome at all stages of diagnosis, some who attend have just been diagnosed, others have just finished treatment and some are a number of years past diagnosis.
2. What should I bring to the event?
Unless you have been asked to bring specific items for a workshop that you have chosen, you do not need to bring anything with you on the day. A week before the event we will send you the final joining instructions and a map, but you do not need these to register on the day. We will provide you with a pen, paper and handouts on arrival.
3. Will I know anybody there?
You may recognise some people from your treatment or you may meet new people at the event. If you would like to chat to other women attending ahead of the day then you can join our private online forum for women with ovarian cancer, In Touch. Many women on the group attend our support events, so you can speak to them about what to expect and see if they are attending. To join, let us know your details or call 020 7923 5475.
4. What should I wear?
You are welcome to wear whatever you like, and if specific clothes are required (for example if you have chosen to attend a yoga session), then we will let you know in advance. If you would like to see what other women wear, keep an eye on our Facebook page for photos from past events, or you can view our Being Together video.
5. I have additional requirements, for example eyesight, hearing or mobility concerns. What should I do?
Please get in touch with the Supportive Services team on 020 7923 5475 and we will always try our best to accommodate your needs.
6. Do I have to stay for the whole day?
Our events are designed to offer a range of activities and sessions, so if you can stay for the whole day then please do. We understand if you need to arrive late or leave early due to transport or if you don’t feel well enough to stay, so just let us know if this is the case.
7. Will there be food and refreshments?
We always offer several refreshment breaks at our events and at the majority there will also be a seated lunch. We will send the agenda to you around a week before, so you will know what refreshment breaks to expect. As the venues provide the food, we can’t guarantee what will be available ahead of an event but please do get in touch if you have any allergies and we will ask the venue to cater for this.
8. What workshops will I be able to attend?
We use the workshops as an opportunity for you to sample the local services available to you, so the content will differ depending on the location of the event. We will be in touch to let you choose which two or three workshops you would like to attend. Past workshops have included a mindfulness taster, aromatherapy, arts and crafts and diet and nutrition.
9. What happens if I get upset during the event?
Our events are positive days, but if for some reason you do become upset then you can step out of a session at any time. There will be Target Ovarian Cancer staff on hand and often clinial nurse specialists are available if you want a chat. If you would like to discuss anything after an event then you can call our nurse-led Support Line on 020 7923 5475.
10. What happens after the event?
We are keen to ensure that the support we offer isn’t limited to just one day. We hope that you leave the event feeling more confident and empowered to ask for support from your clinical team and from us. If you would like to keep in touch with us after an event, you can sign up for our free enewsletter. We can also support you if you wish to get involved in other areas of the charity such as awareness raising, campaigning and fundraising. Following the event we will be in touch to see what impact the day had and remind to you of the services that we offer – you can order our free support guides, contact our Support Line, join our online forum In Touch and of course, attend another support event.