923. Lisa Wallis
Lisa Wallis, from Barnstaple, is the founder of the charity ‘ChemoHero’, an organisation that spreads kindness by sending boxes of treats to patients undergoing intravenous chemotherapy.
Lisa was inspired to act after undergoing chemotherapy twice. The boxes are filled with useful products to help with the side effects of treatment, luxury goods to make patients smile and items to keep their loved ones occupied while they sleep during treatment. Many of the items found in the boxes are donated by local community businesses in Devon. Each box also contains information signposting to other support charities, along with a personalised handwritten note from the volunteer who packed the box. Lisa has been diagnosed with terminal cancer, but she hopes that ‘ChemoHero’ continues to provide boxes of kindness to chemotherapy patients for years to come.
Lisa will receive her award from her MP, Peter Heaton-Jones.
In a personal letter to Lisa, Prime Minister Theresa May said:
“You have responded to tremendously difficult personal circumstances with enormous courage and strength. Your ‘ChemoHero’ boxes of kindness are bringing some comfort to hundreds of people who are undertaking their first chemotherapy treatment and letting them know that they are not alone.”
“I am truly overwhelmed to be recognised with a Point of Light award from the Prime minister. I started ChemoHero is 2013 and with the full support of my local community we were able to get ChemoHero registered with the charity commission. I felt so alone during my own first few chemotherapies and didn’t want any one else to go through this emotion. I had started to notice that when the word cancer is used the emphasis still is very much on the end of life care and not so much the beginning stages of treatment which is incredible difficult what ever your cancer diagnosis. Fast forward to 2018 and we have distributed just over 400 boxes of kindness to Chemotherapy patients filled with useful and luxury items to help during their very first treatment.
With this recognition from the Prime Minister I hope it’ll raise more awareness in how everyone has something to give and is able to help those going through Chemotherapy….we may not have a cure for cancer yet but we can all give a bit of kindness!”
Peter Heaton-Jones, MP for North Devon said:
“I am delighted that Lisa has been given the Prime Minister’s Points of Light award. The work that she does is inspiring and helps people at the most difficult time of their lives. My own family has been affected by cancer and I know just how important this sort of work is, both to patients and their loved ones. I congratulate Lisa wholeheartedly and I am honoured to have been asked by the Prime Minister to present her with the award.”
Pictured below: Lisa receiving her award from Peter Heaton-Jones MP