Friday, 27 June 2014

Pledge to Beat Mesothelioma

We all know that medical research is our best hope for improving treatment and discovering a cure for asbestos related diseases like mesothelioma. We also know this will require commitment and resources. That is why we have launched the mesothelioma pledge- our call for the Government to ensure proper funding for research.
We would like your help today:
·        Please print off and sign this pledge yourself (using the form below)
·        Please ask your MP to show their support by signing Early Day Motion 995 in Parliament (the wording of the motion is below)
Early Day Motion 995- Mesothelioma

This Early Day Motion has been set down by Tracey Crouch MP. Early Day Motions are put down so that MPs can show their support for issues such as this. It is already supported by over sixty MPs. Please write to your MP and ask them to sign today. If you would like information on how to contact your MP please write to us.

The Early Day Motion says: That this House notes with concern that mesothelioma is an invasive form of lung cancer caused primarily by prior exposure to asbestos; recognises that there is currently no cure for this devastating disease and that mesothelioma patients frequently have a very short life expectancy and experience complex debilitating symptoms; further notes that the UK has the highest rate of the disease in the world and that over the next 30 years more than 50,000 people will die of mesothelioma in the UK unless new treatments are found; believes that investment in research into the causes and potential cures for mesothelioma is desperately needed; pays tribute to the great work of the former hon. Member for Manchester, Wythenshawe and Sale East, the late Paul Goggins, to raise the profile of the need for long-term investment into mesothelioma research; and calls on the Government to facilitate the establishment of a long-term sustainable mesothelioma research scheme funded by the insurance industry.

The Mesothelioma Pledge
I am proud to sign the Beat Mesothelioma Pledge:
Mesothelioma is an aggressive cancer and the UK has the highest number of sufferers in the world. There is currently no cure. Over the next 30 years more than 50,000 people will die in the UK unless new treatments are found. Investment into researching the causes and potential cures for mesothelioma is desperately needed if we are to find those treatments.
That is why we are calling on the Government to facilitate the establishment of a long-term sustainable mesothelioma research scheme funded by the insurance industry.

Name:                                              Signature: 
Post Code:                                      Date:

Friday, 13 June 2014

Lend DAST a Hand

Derbyshire Asbestos Support Team are unfortunately dealing with an increasing amount of cases. We are now carrying out around 10 home visits each week – and when some of those cases are as far away as Northampton or Grimsby this is a big strain on our resources. Natalie carries out the majority of the visits, while Joanne helps out where she can fit them around her own workload.  We also now have occasional support from Paul Marklew, who usually works for Derbyshire Unemployed Workers’ Centres.  Even so, it is proving to be a strain – and if Natalie wants to take a much-needed holiday it causes chaos!

We are currently advertising for support in carrying out our home visits.  We were recently awarded a grant from Derbyshire Community Foundation to recruit and train two new advice volunteers to cover our home county.  We have also been advertising for volunteer drivers.  If we can find someone with their own transport who enjoys driving (with petrol expenses paid) that would be a great help.  Our policies state that home visits shouldn’t be carried out alone – plus having someone to drive Natalie to her visits means that she can put some of the travelling time to good use.

Unfortunately, we have had very little response to our calls for help. Do you know anyone who might be interested?  We’d be very keen to talk to them!

William Bear wants to know if he can volunteer to help eat that cake
Sarah has also recently put out a call for voluntary help in the fundraising department.  As DAST go out and help more people…then their families and friends all want to help us in return.  Events are being organised throughout the region and because we are such a small staff, it can be tricky for us to give support to everyone.  We are asking if anyone out there would like to become a regional DAST community fundraiser, who would act as our representative in their county. Again, all reasonable expenses would be paid.

Volunteering is good for you!  Why not give it a go…?

Friday, 6 June 2014

Action Mesothelioma Day

Each year Derbyshire Asbestos Support Team is instrumental in organising Action Mesothelioma Day.  This is an opportunity for anyone to reflect and celebrate the lives of those affected by this asbestos cancer.  As usual, the 2014 AMD will take place at Leicester Cathedral.

The date of the event is Friday 4th July.  There will be a cathedral service of Reflection and Hope commencing at 3.30pm.  DAST’s Joanne Gordon is on the list of speakers, along with:
·        Lady Jennifer Gretton
·        Professor Dean Fennell
·        Dr Mick Peake - Consultant in Respiratory Medicine
·        Alastair Ault - Patient
·        Jill Lemon – Mesothelioma UK

After the service there will be a dove release and then an afternoon tea, giving people the opportunity to meet and share thoughts and experiences.  You can also sponsor a message on one of our dove shaped cards.

If you would like to attend the day, or sponsor a message, then please contact Joanne at

Message cards are hung on these trees for everyone to read and reflect.