What We Do

WHY Cancer Charity

We Hear You (WHY) provides a free professional counselling service for anyone affected by a diagnosis of cancer or another life threatening condition. This includes family, friends, colleagues and carers as well as patients. WHY recognises that the need for emotional support to cope with the traumatic experience of a life threatening condition does not fit within a specified time frame. As a result, our service is available to anyone who is or has been affected or bereaved by a life threatening condition at any point, even if the experience was a long time ago.

The counsellors at WHY are professionally trained, experienced and adhere to the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) or alternative professional body.

As an organisational member of BACP, WHY is bound by its Ethical Framework for Good Practice in Counselling and Psychotherapy and subject to the professional Conduct Procedure for the time being in force.

Watch our film

Our Director Melissa Hillier and Clinical Manager Cath Wilkins talk about WHY's counselling service and why it's so important to the people who use it.

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Positive Action on Cancer was founded in 1994 by Jill Miller, initially as a telephone helpline for women affected by breast cancer. In 1998, research indicated the need for a counselling service rather than a telephone helpline. Since then the service has evolved to meet the needs of people in the local community affected by cancer or any other life threatening condition. In 2016 the charity rebranded as We Hear You (WHY), in recognition of this broader remit, with the generous support of local branding company Hello Communications.

We offer counselling at a variety of locations including  Bath, Bradford-on-Avon, Frome, Midsomer Norton, Trowbridge, Street, Warminster, Weston-super-Mare and Yeovil. Further information about the venues we work in can be found on the venues page. Our specialist children's cousellors currently work in the community in Bath, Frome, Street and Yeovil and in schools in Frome, Trowbridge and Westbury. Since 2017 we've also offered online counselling via a video platform for people of 16 and over and group counselling for adults living with and beyond cancer, funded by Macmillan Cancer Support.

WHY provides a safe, confidential environment, supporting people to manage the impact of cancer and life threatening conditions on their lives. Our counsellors are here to listen and to help people find effective ways of dealing with the difficulties they are facing.

Although WHY is committed to providing a free service, our counsellors are fully qualified and paid for the work they do. WHY offers a minimum of 100 counselling sessions each week across 20 locations, with a weekly running cost of around £4400. We rely entirely on voluntary donations from individuals, local businesses and grant-making trusts to maintain our service. Any contributions, large or small, are of great value to us, so please consider making a donation if you can, or donating your time and skills to fundraise for us.

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