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Get to know Kerrie

16 Oct, 2018

Get to know Kerrie

CanTeen is at the heart of the community

Hello, I am Kerrie and I have worked at CanTeen for almost six years now. A friend introduced me to CanTeen when I moved to the Hawkes Bay from the UK. I worked in the NHS for 11 years, supporting children, young people and their families, both in their homes and hospital setting. I also worked in the community with another charity providing support and focused workshops for young people and their siblings living with life limiting and life-threatening illnesses.

CanTeen is here for young people facing cancer when and where there is no one else

It felt natural for me to join CanTeen as I had a good skill set to be able to make a difference and to learn from the young people and their families. The principles and beliefs of Canteen thread naturally through all aspects of our work, from the CEO and Board right through to the volunteers and donors. It simply feels right.

We help young people dream and meet their full potential

Being a Youth Support Coordinator at CanTeen allows me to work with young people with cancer. I have wanted to do that since leaving school. I could see a gap in the service.

Cancer bring out raw honest emotions

I believe we kind of plant seeds and watch young people facing cancer grow, each time slowly stepping back as they become more grounded and self-belief takes hold. We are here to make a difference for them, and in return we are honoured to see their transformation, regardless of the length of time they get to live and enjoy life.

CanTeen does care

I have been involved in running CanTeen’s programmes in Hawkes Bay, to grow and develop the needs and skills of young people. It is rewarding to bring them together, to see them connect on a level that allows honesty and support, vulnerability and celebration.

CanTeen provides workshops that goes beyond learning new skills, it provides a break from reality and nurture friendship. It is just as much the seen as it is the unseen and acceptance they feel to be part of a group where people “Get It”.

When people ask me about my job, I realise how we encourage young people to dream, to look towards the future and value themselves, and ultimately to live during these challenging times.


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