THE former mayor of Littlehampton is appealing to kindhearted residents to back a charity which helped her conquer cancer.
Emma Neno is throwing her weight behind Chichester-based cancer support charity, CancerWise, as it prepares to launch its latest fundraising drive in Littlehampton this month.
Emma, of Winter Knoll, Littlehampton, is helping to lead the cause’s #CancerwiseLove2 campaign which, after its launch, will be running throughout the month of love – February.
It comes after 37-year-old Emma was appointed as a fundraising manager for the organisation, which gave her ‘life-changing support’ after she was diagnosed with cervical cancer, in 2011.
She said: “They’re a true lifeline and were a real lifeline for me. I went through a really difficult time after being diagnosed with cancer – obviously it came as a complete shock.
“I kept asking my family questions which they just didn’t have the answers to.
“CancerWise was just incredible. It was so difficult to find somewhere that didn’t have that ‘hospital’ setting, with people in white coats, to it.
“When I visited the drop-in centre at Chichester, it was totally different. It’s hard to explain, it just felt like people understood what I was going through. I was really able to open up and talk about how I was feeling. It was exactly what I needed.”
Emma has done her fair bit in drumming up cash and awareness for the charity, which supports families from across Sussex and Hampshire.
During her term as the town’s mayor, in 2012-13, she raised an incredible £20,800, which was split between her chosen charities, Home-Start Arun and CancerWise.
The mum-of-two is now appealing for businesses, schools and residents follow her example and join the campaign.
She explained that people can come up with as many weird and wonderful fundraising ideas as possible, from waxing their legs to wearing crazy clothing to work or school.
“I would really like to see this become an annual one,” she added. “And what’s great about this event is that people can tailor it to whatever they want.
“It’s all about being creative and having a bit of fun while raising awareness of CancerWise.”
To celebrate the effort, Emma will be hosting a launch party at the Fish Factory, in East Street, on January 25, from 6pm.
For £13.50, revellers will be able to enjoy a scrumptious two-course fish and chip meal, as well as a fun family quiz.
“I’m so excited to be doing this,” Emma confessed. “It’s just so nice to be able to give something back for all CancerWise did for me.”
To book tickets for the fish and chip night, call 01903 715000.
For details on CancerWise, see www.cancerwise.org.uk or call 01243 778516