Sue is our Executive Director. Having worked within a corporate environment at Board Level across Media, Publishing and Insurance for more than 30 years, Sue made a decision to put her energy into using her business knowledge to help start-ups and small companies.
Whilst this shift was immensely rewarding, she was continually looking for a more long term commitment within the Charity sector. The eureka moment came when the vacancy for the job at Yes to Life hit her inbox. Sue has been an advocate of alternative healthcare for as long as she can remember battling with institutions during her Mother’s long-term illness. Having also had several close friends diagnosed with breast cancer she wishes she had known about Yes to Life sooner. She is extremely excited about the future for Yes to Life and working with such a dedicated team of people.
Edana is Junior Executive and PA to the Executive Director, Sue. Edana comes from a corporate events background and has worked with various clients, from tech giants to automotive brands. Having had enough of the corporate world, she decided she wanted to work for Yes to Life as it aligns with her values.
Having lost her mother to lung cancer in 2008 and her uncle in 2016, she feels there is not enough support for alternative healthcare so is really looking forward to adding value to Yes to Life.
Miquel is a professional fundraiser with over 20 years’ experience in the charity sector, 12 of them in the UK. He has worked in different sectors, from health, international development, community to the elderly; on a local, national and international level. He has raised funds for different charities and projects, no matter how big or small. He has also project managed international development projects in different West African countries.
He is a Dad of 2 boys and a girl, and enjoys gardening, growing vegetables and making furniture to keep himself busy over the week ends!
"I am really please to work for a such fantastic charity as Yes to Life. I have seen in my own family how cancer can affect the person and the whole family. But what really saved us all was having information, choices and been able to make those decisions with everything clear in our heads."
Tom has been at the top of his profession with his own practice as a funding consultant for charities and the arts for over 30 years . Prior to that he held CEO appointments with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Motability (founding charity director) and as Secretary General of the International Federation of Multiple Sclerosis Societies Societies (the official world NGO for MS) which led to him being appointed to the Mental Health Executive of the WHO.
As a consultant he’s advised and developed fundraising for over 100 charities “but Yes to Life is an entirely new challenge in a new field for me. So exciting. It’s young, enterprising and successful but with everything still ahead of it -and I can bring it a lot of different skills to enable it to make more money and be able to expand as it has to , due to demands and calls now upon it. It’s the price of its success!”
Tom also holds an NVQ 4 in social care and has owned and co-managed an EMI residential care home in Kent . A Londoner, he’s also a Vienna Conservatoire - trained classical pianist and a Cambridge medieval languages Masters graduate (“no good at either so I had to find something else to do!” )
John became a regular volunteer in the office after losing his wife Beata to cancer in 2015. Yes To Life had supported Beata during her cancer journey, so John was keen to give something back to the charity and to help it reach out to more cancer patients who were unable to get the help they need from the mainstream charities.
John is also the founder of a cancer campaign called ‘Dying for a Cure’, which is calling on the UK Government to implement new incentives and controls to tackle the commercial exploitation of cancer, in order to speed up innovation and improve access to new medicines.
Nicole is a political scientist who has been interning with Yes to Life. She has worked in various roles in planning, finance and politics including the Buenos Aires city government and Buenos Aires 2018 Youth Olympic Games Organising Committee. She has three main goals: tackling issues of social inclusion, creating value for the community by participating in public organisations and taking action to fuel social change.
When she moved to London, she decided to get directly involved in the charity sector and joined Yes to Life, a place where she can combine her knowledge and holistic background to help others.
Diana's background is in science, farming and horticulture. In 2006, she was diagnosed with breast cancer and conventional medical treatment left her in a very poor state of health, which her doctors seemed powerless to improve.
She researched natural and holistic ways to improve her own health and following a series of small lifestyle adjustments, healthy nutrition, detoxification, some holistic therapies and supplements, she saw immediate and dramatic improvements. She became a Yes to Life Helpline Volunteer to help people facing cancer to know that there is so much that they can do themselves to help improve their own health. Diana now works as a volunteer with the HQ team helping out at events and awareness of the charity.
Claire joined Yes to Life as the Help Line Administrator but now also works on Funding Administration and assisting Sue on a weekly basis with all funding enquiries. Claire is a reflexologist who practises in Hertfordshire, after having held a keen interest in Complementary and Alternative Medicine for many years for both her and her families’ own health and wellbeing.
Yes to Life helped to provide a positive approach to her close friend’s cancer diagnosis at a time when she appeared to have very limited options open to her.
Clare McLusky BSc (Hons)
Clare has worked for Yes to Life since 2007, and as a volunteer for the helpline since 2009. She is motivated by her own experience of cancer, cancer treatment and on going healing. She has been practicing meditation since 2006 and in 2012 she gained a masters degree in Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy from Oxford University.
She teaches mindfulness in Oxfordshire and runs courses and workshops for people living with cancer. She writes a blog for Yes to Life called Mind Choice.
Debra White Hughes
Debra is a helpline volunteer. After resolving her own breast cancer without conventional treatments in 2014, Debra is keen to support a greater awareness of nutritional approaches to health and treatments not currently available on the NHS.
Debra has an MBA and a professional background in the corporate world, in financial services and management consultancy; and has many years’ experience of coaching in the context of both professional and personal goals. Debra is married and lives in Wiltshire near Bath.
Elaine is a 3-time cancer survivor and volunteers on our helpline. She has an MBA in Legal Practice and diplomas in Psychology and advanced Nutrition. She is a former CEO and COO of major companies as well as running her own enterprises and business networks. For nearly 20 years Elaine has been a Transformational Business Consultant and is an expert in the DISC model of Behavioural Profiling.
She is passionate about supporting senior women in business to recognise the importance of achieving optimum health and wellbeing, for their own sake and the health of their employees. Elaine lives in Nottingham, has a son with Asperger's Syndrome, a daughter and 2 grandsons, a kitten, a puppy and her son has a pet rat!
Elisabetta came across Yes to Life shortly after having been diagnosed with cancer in 2009. She was already aware of a lump since 2008 but it took a while to diagnose. After being diagnosed she decided to take an alternative way to heal herself. She met Robin at a workshop given by the herbalist Margi Flint at the CNM and joined Yes to Life as a Help Line Volunteer in 2013.
She continues to follow a healthy regime, including a raw food diet, doing gi gong and yoga as well as healing and acupuncture. She believes we all have to find our own way through cancer. It is really about listening to yourself and your body. Cancer is not a one size fits all, but very individual.
Originally from Hong Kong, Gillian lived and worked in Paris for 12 years before moving back to London after finishing cancer treatment in Paris. She was diagnosed with brain cancer (stage 3) in Sept 2015 followed by surgery to remove the tumour. Luckily, 95% of all visible tumour was able to be removed.
Despite her resistance to conventional cancer treatments, family pressure was too much for her and she finally resolved to undergo the standard of care but chose to combine it with a functional medicine approach, and as many complementary therapies as she could afford, to combat the toxicity of chemo and radiation. She sailed through treatments with minimal suffering and has never felt better in my life since. Volunteering at Yes to Life gives her the opportunity to give back to the cancer community in the way she would like to - she is all about the integrative approach to taking on cancer and keeping open-minded!
Gladys Hall, BA (Hons)
Gladys has over 12 years of working in the public sector, mainly the NHS and the Department of Health before that. Gladys is now a qualified massage therapist with an interest in holistic nutrition and hoping to gain a qualification in the latter.
Her personal experience of cancer led her to Dr Young-Snell who introduced her to Yes to Life. After learning more about the charity she decided to volunteer as she strongly identifies with what the charity does, i.e. helping people with cancer making informed choices.
Melanie is a qualified nurse, who works part-time in a GP practice in London.
Ruth Sharif DipNut, DipNat, BComm Int (Hons), mBANT
Ruth is a committed and passionate naturopathic nutritionist. She graduated from the College of Naturopathic Medicine in London in 2011 in Nutritional Therapy and Naturopathy. Before having children and embarking on her training at CNM, she worked for various consumer goods companies in brand management.
She has always been interested in natural therapies and discovering and treating the root causes of illnesses however and relished the opportunity to take a different path once the children were old enough. Ruth has her own nutrition practice at home and is thoroughly enjoying the process of helping people to optimise their health and well-being.
Her own personal experience of recovery and return to vitality was triggered by a diagnosis of early stage, non-invasive breast cancer. She complemented my treatment and recovery with nutritional and herbal support which has helped her to feel stronger and more balanced in myself than ever before.
“I feel I can use my experiences to help others overcome challenges in their own lives and emerge feeling stronger as a result.”
You can find out more about Ruth's work as a nutritional therapist here
Suzanne is Mother to a Teenage Son, runs a Holistic Centre in Hertfordshire and is passionate about providing access to Complementary Therapies, so helping to support this by volunteering with Yes to Life makes perfect sense. Suzanne has now joined the Helpline having supported the charity before with call checking administration.
Wendy Smith BSc (Hons) Nutritional Therapy, MBANT, CNHC, AFMCP Graduate
Wendy started her working life as a legal secretary, moving on to become a personal assistant in the film industry. Having held a deep passion for food, health and the environment, she found she could combine these interests by pursuing a career in nutritional therapy.
She decided to take a leap of faith and go back to full-time study, graduating from the University of Westminster in 2001. She has been helping people to optimise their health through nutrition and lifestyle changes ever since.
Wendy has had experience with clients, family and friends who’ve had cancer. She became aware of Yes to Life some years ago through her work and has referred many people to what she considers to be a much-needed information service that helps people find their own way during a difficult, confusing time.
Hilary has worked for 30 years as a neonatal nurse and trained to be a nutritional therapist in 2005. During her career, she has taken an active role in counselling bereaved parents. She has used integrative therapy throughout her life, particularly at the time of both her husband’s and her own cancer experience.
Her personal experience of using nutrition to improve a long term health condition led her to take a university course in Nutritional Medicine. She strongly believes that integrative treatment for all health conditions is vital for the future. Hilary has supported Yes to Life for many years, being instrumentive in helping get the Wellbeing Workshops off the ground. With her wealth of knowledge she is now working as a Moderator on our Life Directory Forum.
Dan is a freelance web developer, developing websites for various companies, who volunteers his services to the charity. Personal experiences with cancer and related conditions have led Dan to believe that it would be a significant step to see complementary medicines being incorporated into the traditional medical system.
Jane is a psychotherapist and specialist cancer counsellor with over twenty years’s experience of working with cancer patients and those close to them, at all stages of the disease. She was one of the founders of the charity The Cancer Counselling Trust where for ten years she was part of the clinical team as well as tackling fundraising and outreach work.
She has always had a particular interest in the role of complementary and alternative approaches to cancer, keenly aware of the benefits but also the difficulties that a desire to think outside the medical box can bring in its wake. For this reason, she supports the work of Yes to Life, knowing that having a reliable source of information is an essential part of the support structure for anyone facing a cancer diagnosis and its consequences.
Helen provides external supervisory support for our Help Line Operators. She is a counsellor with twenty years' experience of working with people with cancer and their friends and families. She has also worked extensively with helpline staff in the mental health field.
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