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Cancer patient goes the extra mile for Spotlight Radiotherapy Appeal

Cancer patient goes the extra mile for Spotlight Radiotherapy Appeal

A woman from Benfleet has walked from Basildon Hospital to Southend Hospital to raise money for the Spotlight Radiotherapy Appeal, after her cancer care.

After being treated with 12 sessions of radiotherapy for non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma in May this year, Debra Holloway, 37, decided to take on a 12 mile walking challenge to give something back.

Together with 10 friends and family members their final journey ended up as just over 13 miles, raising £1,575 to benefit Southend Hospital Charitable Foundation’s appeal which aims to purchase four surface guided radiation devices to help improve patient care.

The equipment will bring many benefits to patients undergoing radiotherapy, including the elimination of permanent placement tattoos and the need for full-face masks.

Now in remission, Debra said: “Knowing that my fundraising will help so many other cancer patients in the future inspired me to take on this challenge. It was important to me that I complete something so worthwhile.

“Going through radiotherapy has opened my eyes to a whole new world; I’m a much stronger person this side of it and this absolutely won’t be the last thing I do to benefit others on their own paths to recovery.”

Debra couldn’t have thanked the radiotherapy team more for their ongoing support and encouragement during her 12 sessions, but she found that wearing a full-face mask made her radiotherapy journey an overwhelming one, due to her fear of enclosed spaces. She credits her faith, controlled breathing, and some S-Club 7 tracks that helped get her through her experience.

Debra said: “My radiotherapy experience had its ups and downs; most notably the mask – other than the anxiety around it, little things like what if I needed to sneeze, wanted to move my head, swallow or had an itch? It was a hard time that I got through with the support of the radiotherapy team, my amazing friends and family, church family and my colleagues and employers.”

To support Debra’s fundraising: or to find out more about the Spotlight Radiotherapy Appeal visit

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