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Why I volunteer and why you should too - Meet John

17 October 2022

John Volunteers Week

John Lynch has been volunteering for Ovarian Cancer Action for more than five years. John is a machine, carrying out awareness talks across the country to community groups, workplaces, schools, clubs and more. His passion, enthusiasm and dedication is inspirational and as well as delivering talks he's now training people to do them too. So before we ask you to Join John, let's meet the man himself.

What motivated you to volunteer with Ovarian Cancer Action?

My mother died of ovarian cancer when she was 52 and the memories of what a horrible, wasting disease it is and just how much she suffered during the last months of her life, always stayed with me. These memories acted as a motivation for me to try in some small way to help – and as I started volunteering with Ovarian Cancer Action in 2017, over 30 years after she died, it took me a long time to actually do something!     

Why awareness talks? 

I think it is such a crucial element in the drive to improve survival rates from ovarian cancer. There is still much work to do in this area as around 90% of women cannot name the four main symptoms of ovarian cancer, but it is hugely rewarding area to be involved in. 

Some of the awareness talks I have given have been attended by 250 people who have been engaged, concerned, shocked and often angry about the high mortality rates and their own lack of knowledge about this disease. But they all leave with information that could help them, or family and friends, to recognise the symptoms in the future and hopefully lead to earlier diagnosis. This feeling of complementing all the brilliant work our charity is doing in the area of research into treatment of the disease and finding a screening tool, is really satisfying.

A long road remains to be travelled, but with the continued efforts of all staff and volunteers we can and will, eventually defeat this disease. As Shakespeare said, “It is not in the stars to hold our destiny but in ourselves.” 

What would you like to say to anyone reading this, who's interesting in delivering talks?     

We need you! Talks are mostly delivered via Zoom so you don't need to worry about transport or taking lots of time out. You just need a passion for ovarian cancer and raising awareness about signs and symptoms. That information could be lifesaving. I'll help train you, you'll be given our ready-made presentation on ovarian cancer and as a group we'll support each other. 

This means so much to me and I know it means a lot to you. 

If you want to Join John and raise awareness of ovarian cancer with as many people as possible and deliver awareness talks, get in touch at info@ovarian.org.uk to find out more.