Providing practical and emotional support for anyone affected by mesothelioma or other asbestos-related diseases across London and The South East
London Asbestos Support was set up by The London Hazards Centre Trust Limited, a registered charity, established in 1984.
We obtained independent charity status in 2017.
All of our services are free.
Educated to Masters level, Marika has worked with cancer patients most of her nursing career. She worked as a Clinical Nurse Specialist for the last 17 years in both palliative care and lung cancer. Her knowledge and experience have enabled her to support patients and families medically, emotionally and practically throughout their cancer journey. It seemed a natural progression after her retirement as a Lung Cancer CNS to join the charity as a Support Worker where she is able to use much of her previous experience to support victims of asbestos-related disease.
Having completed her initial nursing training in the early 1980s, Yvonne continued her education up to PG Diploma/MSc in Advanced Clinical Practice (cancer nursing) at the University of Surrey. She completed 33 years in the health service, having worked at St Francis Hospice and in numerous hospitals, and has cared for many sufferers of asbestos disease. After retiring, she found it difficult to leave it all behind, so she felt well placed with her past knowledge and experience to undertake the role with the charity. She has set up support groups in the locality, to make a real difference in the lives of those affected by asbestos exposure.
Alison spent 24 years at the Department of Work and Pensions, initially as a benefits advisor and then progressing into managerial roles. She became a board member for one of the first Maggie's Cancer centres and worked on a voluntary basis as a Samaritan. When Asbestos Action Tayside was first set up, Alison was appointed to manage the charity - providing practical and emotional support for sufferers and their families. She moved to Kent in 2014 and joined the charity where her empathetic and friendly nature, together with expertise in her field helps provide people with the reassurance, guidance and support they need.
Denise started her nursing career as an adult nurse in acute medicine. She then went on to work with bowel cancer patients as a nurse practitioner. For the past 7 years, she has worked as a Lung Cancer Nurse Specialist. During this time she has set up 2 very successful support groups for lung cancer/mesothelioma patients. Denise has gained a lot of knowledge and experience of mesothelioma and other asbestos-related diseases during her time as a Lung Cancer CNS and has attended many workshops and conferences relating to this subject. Having now retired from the NHS and joined the charity she feels that her knowledge and experience will be invaluable in supporting sufferers of asbestos-related diseases.
ADVICE & SUPPORT
Our Support Workers are very experienced in supporting sufferers of mesothelioma and other asbestos-related diseases and understand the impact such diseases have on individuals and their families, both physically and psychologically. They are also knowledgeable about state benefits and compensation schemes and maintain close liaison with other key professionals in the care of the sufferer and their families.
Our team are available to visit individual sufferers in the comfort of their own home or can be contacted by telephone, to assist with paperwork and provide ongoing support and guidance.
We hold monthly support group meetings across London and the South East (click for a map of support groups) for sufferers and their carers to meet others undergoing the same experience.
Our experienced staff, together with special guest speakers and other professionals will be available to provide information, advice or a listening ear in a safe and private environment.
We will always have a Clinical Nurse Specialist (CNS) available to answer any questions about your treatment plan or symptoms you are experiencing.
Due to current restrictions, and to keep everyone safe, all meetings in person have been suspended until further notice - however, we have been hosting virtual support group meetings since June 2020.
HELP WITH COMPENSATION
We can provide information about free legal advice and help that's available from lawyers who are experts in dealing with asbestos disease claims.
WHAT OUR BENEFICIARIES SAY
It is so nice to speak to people with the same condition as myself. And so interesting for me and my wife to listen to the guest speakers. This is a marvellous group run by such lovely people who are so kind and helpful and nice to know they are always at the end of the phone. Long may it continue.
Marika, I have benefited greatly from your visits which have become an essential lifeline for me as a cancer sufferer. The charity is a very important part of the overall support required by patients affected by asbestos related diseases.
These sessions I find amazing. I leave at the end of them feeling very elated. After being with people in the same boat as me, my fears and worries are sent back to where they belong and my positive mental attitude is maintained.
I was given a booklet about LASAG when my diagnosis was confirmed of Mesothelioma so gave them a call and was contacted by Marika. We made an appointment and she came to see me at my house and I was really impressed with her knowledge that she had about cancer and what LASAG could do to help me. All my options were explained to me in clear layman’s terms and Marika helped me fill in all the forms needed to put a claim in for compensation, she also called the DWP and made a claim on my behalf for PIP. Once this was done she gave me my options for contacting a solicitor so that I could pursue a civil compensation claim. I am very grateful to LASAG as you need support at a time like this and Marika has given support and advice ever since.
Yvonne came to see us. She was very helpful giving us all the advice on welfare benefits and other support numbers to help make things easier. She was in regular contact with visits and phone calls. Indeed all through Norman’s treatment and end of life and his passing, the LASAG team have been brilliant. I still get phone calls asking me how I am.
Alison, thank you so much for your visit. I am so glad I made the call to LASAG, the bonus being was to meet such a good person like you. The help you have given us so far has made everything feel so much easier.
Ken & Heather
Thank you for coming to see me yesterday. My head's been in a bit of a spin over the past few weeks, so it was good to take time out with you and learn more about my diagnosis and the support you can offer. Notwithstanding the irreplaceable support and love that my family bring, you tend to feel a little isolated once you're outside of the direct care that the medical professionals have been providing. I understand now the importance of the support that you and your organisation offers to sufferers of asbestos related diseases, and how it provides a vital and seamless link between all the various elements of the process. I look forward to staying in touch and will get along to the support group meeting at Canterbury at the first opportunity I have.