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Our Team

Helen Sandison

I joined the Western Isles Cancer Care Initiative in November 2017, at the very beginning of the project, but at the end of years of hard work by the determined Trustees.  I started with only a pencil in my hand, but with thanks to Third Sector Hebrides, the Trustees and I got straight into setting up the WICCI office and launching the Social Fund, which opened in February 2018.

My background is in Community Development and the Voluntary Sector, working previously as a community development officer with various organisations in the Lochs area.  I am from Kershader originally, and returned home over 10 years ago with my husband David, to raise our family.  We built our house in Habost, Lochs and have lived there ever since.  In my spare time I am chairperson with Pairc Playgroup, and also volunteer on our children’s local school parent council.  I am a fledgling crofter, working with a small flock of sheep and running our croft in Habost.

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Donald Macleod

My name is Donald Macleod and I’m currently Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Western Isles Cancer Care Initiative (WICCI). I come from the Point District of Lewis but have lived in Stornoway for the past 15 years.

Prior to retirement I worked for Highlands and Islands Enterprise for nearly 20 years, mainly dealing with small business and community development. Since retirement I have maintained my interest in community development and continue to serve as a committee member with several local organisations.

Four years ago, I was invited to join a steering Group set up by the Isle of Lewis Macmillan Cancer Support Committee to investigate the possibility of setting up a partnership with Macmillan Cancer Support Scotland to address the specific issues faced by Cancer patients and their families in the Western Isles.

In February 2017 on the recommendation of the Steering Group and with support from Macmillan Cancer Support, WICCI was registered as a Charity.

It is a privilege to serve as Chairman of the organisation in its formative stages and work with a group of dedicated volunteer Trustees to further the aims and objectives of this unique partnership with Macmillan Cancer Support Scotland.

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Mabel Macleay

I was born in Glasgow of Lewis parents; my mum from Back and my dad from New Tolsta. We moved back to live in Lewis when I was about 8. I am married to John and live in Stornoway. I work for the Care & Repair project in Tighean Innse Gall. In 1991, I joined the MacMillan Cancer Support committee and I have been a fundraiser for them ever since. One of the highlights for us was when we learned that we had raised over £1 million since the committee started and this money has helped to support many in our community who have been given a cancer prognosis.   I am really proud of what we have achieved in setting up the new WICCI service, in partnership with MacMillan Cancer Support, and honoured to be a co-founder trustee. This is the first time this has been undertaken.

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Christina MacIver

My name is Christina MacIver and I’m one of the trustees of WICCI. I live in Point with my husband and our two children who are aged 19 and 23. I’ve lived in Point for almost 27 years and work as a Learning Support assistant in Sgoil an Rubha.

I’ve been involved with the local Macmillan Cancer Support fundraising group for 10 years, the last 5 years as Chair. I thoroughly enjoy volunteering with Macmillan, I’ve met some lovely people and been to so many great events over the years, organised by the committee and other groups and organisations. The support MacMillan has in the islands is huge and we are so appreciative of that support. I’m proud to be a part of a great committee who were recognised by Macmillan as Committee of the Year in 2014 as we’ve raised over £1 million in over 40 years.

I joined the committee after seeing the support our MacMillan nurse gave us as a family in the months before my father passed away.

During fundraising events we would be approached by people who would tell us the difficulties of being away from home during their cancer treatment, mainly the expense of being off island for days, weeks and in some instances, months. With this in mind we approached MacMillan to see what could be done. Although this process took a few years,  I am so delighted that we are at the point of receiving applications and helping people ease the financial burden of their cancer journey.

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Iain Macaulay

Brought up in the crofting village of Sollas, North Uist. Now retired from a career in social work after working for Strathclyde Regional Council, Church of Scotland Board of Social Responsibility and Comhairle nan Eilean. Now living in Upper Coll, married with two children and one grand daughter. Cancer has affected my family, friends and colleagues over many years and I have also seen its impact on others through my social work career. These experiences make me very keen to give my support to the great work of WICCI and Macmillan.

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Jessie Murray

I live in Sandwick. I am now retired, having worked as a librarian for many years in the Lothians, and since returning to  Lewis, at Lews Castle College. My interest in MacMillan Cancer Support grew after seeing the care a close friend received from MacMillan nurses, and I have been a member of the local MCS fund-raising team for over 20 years. It is so good to see WICCI now established and providing a service directly in response to local need with a minimum of formalities.

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Lindsay Macleod

I live in Point and have been working with the local Macmillan Fundraising Group as its Treasurer for the last five years.

I was asked to join WICCI two years ago as its Treasurer to help develop and support the Initiative going forward. I am keen to support with the establishment of the Initiative to help those affected by cancer in the islands.

I work as the local Commercial Relationship Manager for Bank of Scotland, working with businesses throughout the Western Isles.

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Mairi Helen Macdonald

Profile to follow.

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Donald John Macdonald

Profile to follow.

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Margaret Eaves

I moved to Lewis in July 1978 with my husband and young family.

After my husband died and I retired I became involved with the local Macmillan Cancer Support fundraising committee and more recently WICCI.

I enjoy knitting and help out with a group at Trust Housing on Matheson Road.
I’m involved with the Syrian families resettlement project and am enjoying getting to know them.
I also enjoy travelling to visit my family on the mainland and further afield.

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