A local Wokingham charity, My Cancer My Choices, has just been awarded The King’s Award for Voluntary Service.

The King’s Award for Voluntary Service is the highest award a local voluntary group can receive in the UK and is equivalent to an MBE.

The charity is just one of two organisations that have received this highly prestigious award in Berkshire this year.

Just 262 UK charities, social enterprises, and voluntary groups will receive the award in 2023.

My Cancer My Choices’ founder Mandy Barter said: “We are so proud to receive this award, which is in recognition of volunteers - both past and present - who are truly outstanding.

“They make a big difference in supporting people with cancer in our community.  

“We could not deliver our service without our exceptional group of dedicated, caring, professional, and hardworking volunteers. This award is a wonderful acknowledgment of them.”  

My Cancer My Choices provides complementary therapies and support to people living with cancer across Berkshire.  

Their mission is to empower people living with cancer, enabling them to make active choices to enhance their well-being, as they come to terms with their diagnosis.

My Cancer My Choices user Claire Grove said: “I can't stress enough how much of a difference the My Cancer My Choices volunteers make.

“From the greetings I got when I attended sessions, to the therapies I received, I felt embraced by everyone I met.

“The gratitude I feel to those volunteers, and to the volunteers who fundraise for such a valuable service, is immense.

“They all help make a very stressful and difficult time with cancer, more manageable. They helped me feel more human and less like a patient."

Specialist therapists volunteer their time to offer a range of one-to-one therapies, which include acupuncture, massages, and art therapy.

They also provide group therapies like mindfulness and yoga.

MCMC volunteer therapist Anne Thomas said: “I can’t think of any better way to use my skills and experience in oncology massage than to volunteer with My Cancer My Choices.

“It’s always a privilege to see the changes in patients even after one session. It is truly rewarding.

“As a volunteer with My Cancer My Choices, I feel recognised and supported as a valued member of the team.”