Following last month's 'Meet the Champs' Q&A with MikeO, this month we meet latchbrook, who’s been with the Community since early 2017. You'll find latchbrook champing our Melanoma, Skin cancer and Travel insurance groups, and also welcoming newbies to the Community in our New to the Community group, and giving them a ‘nudge’ in the right direction - what a busy Champion she is!

  1. How long have you been using the Online Community, and what brought you to the site?

I have been an active member of the site since the beginning of 2017, although I had lurked around a bit before feeling confident enough to post. I’d been diagnosed with a malignant melanoma in November 2016 completely out of the blue and wanted to find more information about this type of cancer.

I didn’t think to look on Macmillan’s website, as I’d always thought that they only helped people who were at the end stage with cancer. A Google search though led me here and the rest, as they say, is history!

  1. What’s been your Online Community highlight to date?

This is a very difficult one to answer. I have to say I felt very honoured to be asked to be a Community Champion, as I didn’t think that what I was doing in trying to help people understand their melanoma diagnosis was any different to what anyone else could do.

In addition, I think it’s great when someone tells me that my help has calmed their worries and helped them put things into perspective.

  1. What’s the single best piece of advice you’ve ever received?

I think this would have to be to take one step at a time and try not to worry. I guess that’s two pieces though!

  1. If you could offer one piece of advice to an Online Community newbie (patient, family member, friend or carer), what would it be?

Just focus and deal with each step of the process as it happens; making that appointment with your GP, going for a consultation, going for a biopsy etc., and don’t immediately start to focus on the worst-case scenario because, for a lot of people, it doesn’t come to that.

  1. Who’s your hero and why?

I think I’ll have to give this accolade to my husband who was my rock when I was first diagnosed. He helped by listening to me when I needed to talk because I was worried and came with me to offer support at various hospital appointments.

  1. Tell us random fact about yourself.

Okay, a random fact would be that I’m a keen follower of anything equestrian even though I’m allergic to horses!

In case any members or users of the Community weren't totally sure what a Community Champion is, our Champs are a group of dedicated Community members who've volunteered to keep an extra close eye on the site for us. Our Champs welcome new members to the Community, ensure they're comfortable using the site, offer fantastic support and give members a 'nudge' in the direction of useful groups or further support when it's needed.