Friday, June 14, 2024

Feel Better Month helps anyone with cancer

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Look Good Feel Better helps you find strength and confidence, help you find a community who truly understands what you are going through, and give you ways to disguise the visible effects of cancer.

Look Good Feel Better offers a range of free support programmes for anyone with any cancer at any stage.

It provides time away from the world of diagnosis and treatment, to help people face their cancer with confidence, feel stronger and live better.

“To learn how to draw eyebrows to frame your face, or learn how to manage the change in nails and skin, can be the most powerful thing for somebody to have that sense of normality,” says Clare O’Higgins, general manager of Look Good Feel Better.

“So the looking good element is easy to understand, but feeling better is what participants talk about for a long time after.

“They feel part of a community who understands what they are going through, they feel more in control, they have a sense of normality and more confidence to face treatment, face returning to work, or face turning up at the school gate. Those are the things that make them feel better.”

What’s changed in recent years?

Covid lockdowns meant in-community classes had to be moved online. Participants would receive their customised, hand-picked packs via courier, and could then log into an online skincare and cosmetics session.

Look Good Feel Better has now returned to holding classes in communities throughout New Zealand, however the option of online sessions continue for people who are either in small or rural communities, or for those who prefer to attend from the comfort of their own home.

Its support is not only the empowering cosmetic classes it is known for – now Look Good Feel Better’s programme offering has been greatly expanded.

It offers a wide range of online wellbeing sessions for women and men, on-demand how-to videos, livestreamed Q&A discussions and wellbeing classes covering gentle exercise, mindfulness and yoga, through to a suite of Cancer Conversations podcasts.

“We are by their side, how they want, when they want and as many times as they want,” O’Higgins says.

A service that is there for anyone impacted by cancer at any stage, Look Good Feel Better also partners with other cancer charities to provide complementary programmes.

Participants in their own words:

Rachelle: I refused to say I have cancer, I didn’t want it to define me. Every appointment …meant pain, or anxiety. This one was woohoo. I left feeling a million bucks.

Michelle: When I heard the word cancer. It was like my whole life, just turned upside down. Cancer doesn’t mean you have to just stay home and cry like I used to do. The Look Good Feel Better programme just built up my confidence.

Gillian: When my hair went, I didn’t realise how much it was going to hit me like a brick. I didn’t even like looking in the mirror. You get a sense of community doing it online. It is just nice to meet people who are going through the same thing, other women who totally understood what I was going through. I had social interaction, a catch up with people, a really informative fun experience – without having to leave home.”

Trista: There’s a lot more that comes with cancer that’s underneath the surface and sometimes you just need that little bit of oomph, that little bit of encouragement. If you think you look good, if you feel somewhat normalised, it does make you feel better. It just empowers you to help yourself look a bit better on the days that you don’t.

Look Good Feel Better in numbers

· 41 centres across New Zealand have in-community women’s classes

· 12 online programmes – including the men’s programme, livestream wellbeing classes such as Pilates, chair yoga and mindfulness)

· 38 on-demand, how-to videos

· 3500 engagements in a women’s, men’s or teens’ class in 2022

· 32 years in New Zealand

Call to action

Visit Farmers in July, and purchase from more than 20 beauty brands, and they will donate $1 and Farmers will match it.

Website: www.lgfb.co.nz

Social media: Instagram: lgfbnz / #Feel Better Month #FarmersNZ

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