CILIPS Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals in Scotland
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Overwhelmed, Angry, Worried, Stressed, Lonely, Sad, Anxious, Guilty, Confused…………

Category: Libraries Matter

Guest Blog by Craig Menzies, Programme Manager, Macmillan in Libraries

The list of emotional side effects associated with a cancer diagnosis is seemingly endless, with the above just a snapshot of the reasons resulting in individuals across Glasgow presenting at their local libraries throughout the past year.

This represents a significant culture shift, and provides substantial evidence to support the theory that a library setting can be transformed to deliver the welcoming and accessible venue required to cater for some of these nonclinical needs, which so often go unmet. So much so, that December 2016 witnessed our services surpassing its 10,000th attendance since our launch in 2012.

This landmark comes less than a year after our first blog (add link) was published, and highlights the significant role that our network of Macmillan Cancer Information & Support Services are delivering to support individuals affected by cancer across Glasgow. Our growing number of attendances, coupled with the fact that each individual across the city is at most just 1 mile away from their nearest service, strengthens our belief that we are edging ever closer to ensuring that ‘no-one in Glasgow should face cancer alone’.

Of course, no-one at all should face cancer alone, regardless of your postcode, and there have been some extremely positive developments nationally, with Macmillan Cancer Supports strategy to replicate such services across the country gathering increasing momentum. Most recently, a new service was launched in Balloch, West Dunbartonshire, along with partnership agreements in North and South Lanarkshire and Dundee, to add to the ever growing list of local authorities delivering such services.

The increasing trends of cancer diagnosis are well documented, and it is important that services like the above are continuously striving to challenge historical culture, to deliver innovative new ways of supporting people in their local communities.

This challenge cannot be achieved without the tireless commitment, motivation and energy of a number of staff and volunteer teams, who have continued to demonstrate their passion and dynamism for developing, improving, and strengthening these services for the people who need them most.