Monday, 14 December 2015

Maggie’s and The Christie are working in partnership to create cancer support of the highest quality - Sinead Collins

Sinead Collins - Centre Head of Maggie’s at The Christie 

Sinead Collins
I’m delighted to introduce myself as Centre Head of the new Maggie’s Centre which will be opening its doors on Kinnaird Road in Spring next year. Readers might recognise me from my previous role at The Christie in surgical oncology. I had 12 wonderful years at The Christie but I am very excited about my new role with Maggie’s.

I’m sure readers will have noticed the rather unique-looking building as it has grown since we broke ground in April this year. I have heard people asking ‘what is Maggie’s?’, ‘what will happen inside this new building?’ and ‘how will this new support help me and my colleagues?’

I’m hoping this blog will give readers a good overview of Maggie’s and the support we’ll be providing, I’ll also be available in person to answer any questions at Grand Round on December 18th and I’ll be hosting an information stand on the glass corridor the week commencing 21st December and again in January. 

So, just to make a start; Maggie’s is a charity that provides completely free practical, emotional and social support for people affected by cancer and their family and friends. Our aim is to support people with all of the issues that cancer brings into their lives. 

Maggie's Centre design
We currently have 18 centres across the UK, online and abroad, each built in the grounds of specialist NHS cancer hospitals. All of our centres are unique, warm and welcoming places. From these centres we offer Maggie’s evidence-based core programme of support which has been developed to complement and add value to the excellent medical treatment and support that  is provided for patients here at The Christie day-in and day-out.

In my new role as Maggie’s Centre Head I will oversee everything that happens in the centre, supporting the needs of anyone who walks through the door, ensuring our programme of support is meeting the needs of the people being treated at The Christie and working with my team to create as warm and welcoming an environment as possible. 

Alongside myself, the new Maggie’s Centre will also be staffed with a team of qualified professionals including a psychologist, cancer support specialists, a benefits advisor, relaxation specialists as well as experts in a particular field who will come into the centre to provide sessions on nutrition, art therapy, tai chi, yoga and creative writing. 

The programme of support we’ll be offering will include psychological support, guidance on nutrition, benefits advice and exercise and has been shown to improve physical and emotional wellbeing.

Support at Maggie's
Any Christie patients and their loved ones will be welcome to access this support at the centre for free and without an appointment as we’ll be offering drop-in cancer support every weekday from 9am-5pm as well as a scheduled daily timetable of courses and workshops. 

As for the centre itself; Maggie’s Centres are intended to feel more like a home than a hospital and are designed to feel non clinical to help make our visitors feel safe, valued and comfortable in an atmosphere that stimulates their imagination and lifts their spirits. 

The new centre at The Christie has been designed by world-renowned architect, Lord Norman Foster, who was born and grew up in Manchester and will be surrounded by a garden designed by landscape designer Dan Pearson. We hope the space will provide patients and their family and friends with a friendly place to meet other people who are in a similar situation as well as offering a calming space where they can simply sit quietly with a cup of tea if that’s what they need.

If any readers have any questions about the new centre and the support we offer or would like to arrange a time for us to meet and to have a look round the centre then please don’t hesitate to get in touch with me on or 07584680575. I look forward to catching up with everyone soon.

For further information on Maggie’s programme of support please visit 

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