Welcome to the Online Community, we hope you find it to be a place of comfort and support. You might be feeling worried, upset, happy or just a bit strange right now, but the Community is here for you 24/7 no matter what you are going through.

Our New to the Community group is a great place to start here on the site, and we’ve collated some great tips from our members which have been posted in the group to help you make the most of the Online Community.

Everyone who is affected by cancer has a different experience, but the Community is here to show that you are not alone.

“When you feel up to it, it would be useful if [you] could pop something about your journey so far into your profile as it really helps others when answering or looking for someone with a similar diagnosis. It also means that you don't have to keep repeating yourself. To do this click on your username and then select 'Edit Profile'. You can amend it at any time and if you're not sure what to write you can take a look at mine by clicking on my username.”


Your profile is an opportunity to personalise how you appear on the site, and explain your situation in as much detail as you would like. To keep everyone in the Community safe, our Community guidelines outline that you shouldn’t give details in your profile such as your full name, contact details or postal address. How you are affected by cancer, the area you live in and your first name can all be included if you would like.

  • Your signature - this is an option below the main text box when you click on your username and then  ‘Edit profile’, and will appear at the bottom of any message you write on the site. You could choose a quote, or put your username if you would like.

  • Managing notifications - the Community is a really active and supportive place, and you might not always want to receive email notifications. You can turn them off by clicking ‘manage notifications’ in the ‘Edit profile’ screen.

  • Changing your profile picture - did you know we had lots of avatars to choose from? Click on your picture while in the ‘Edit profile’ screen to have a look.
  • Changing your username - we recommend keeping your username the same but if you would like to change, email us at community@macmillan.org.uk and let us know what you would like to change it to.

  • Viewing other members’ profiles - click on any member’s username while looking through the Community to view their profile. This is a great way to find out a little bit more about them, and connect with others who might have had similar experiences.

“There is a group button near the top that you can click on and browse through the cancer types and cancer experience. You could browse the other posts to see if there are any you want to reply to and/ or add your own post.”


“Posting in these groups will open up your concerns to a wider group of people who know exactly what you are going through at the moment.“


The groups are where the heart of the Community is, and is the best way to find others who can understand how you are feeling. We have lots of different groups, and you can join as many as you like.

  • Cancer types - these groups are for specific types of cancers. You can join these groups whether you or someone you know has been diagnosed. If you can’t find one for your type of cancer, ask the Community team and we can see what we can recommend.
  • Family and friends - if a loved one or someone you know has been diagnosed with cancer, this group is the best place to go to find others who can understand how you feel.
  • Chat - this is a place for general discussions about anything.
  • Laughter is the best medicine - not everyone on the Community is in the mood for jokes, so we ask that any funny stories, jokes or laughs are posted in this group. This means you can rest assured that your jokes will be well received.

“A cancer diagnosis can bring a lot of stress, confusion and many questions but talking with people who are on the same journey can help a lot”


“Just as there is no right way to react to a cancer diagnosis, there is no right way to feel about the various support options available to us. Some people find enormous value in peer support.”


First and foremost, the Community is a safe place to talk to others about how you are feeling, and connect with people who might have gone through similar experiences. When you click on a group, you can start your own discussion by clicking “start a discussion” underneath the group title. You’ll receive notifications when other members respond. Alternatively, you can scroll through discussions in the group and click “reply” at the bottom of other members’ messages to offer messages of solidarity and support.

  • Email notifications - you will receive notifications from the Community when you post, or updates from groups you are part of. To respond to these, log in to the Community. If you click reply on the email, your message will only be received by the Community team and won’t be visible on the site.
  • Private messages - you can send and receive private messages on the site via the ‘Messages’ button in the top right. You need to be friends with a member before you can message them. To do so, click on their profile and ‘Add friend’ should be an option underneath their username. Once you have clicked this and they have accepted, you can write private messages to that member.
  • Community guidelines - these are used to keep the Community safe and to protect all of our members’ identities on the site. Take a look here.

We’re glad you have found the Community, and we hope you find it to be a place of comfort and kindness. If you have any questions about using the site or would like any further support, you can get in touch with the Community team at community@macmillan.org.uk