A 22-year-old brain tumour survivor has taken her fight for more action to defeat the illness to the European Parliament.
Hannah Jones, of Westminster Park, joined her fellow Young Ambassadors for the Brain Tumour Charity in Brussels to push for increased investment in research and better support services for those with brain tumours.
The teaching assistant – who is one of the stars of a new YouTube video promoting the work of the Brain Tumour Charity – was just 15 when she was diagnosed with the disease.
She underwent three major brain surgeries and gruelling radiotherapy treatment, but the tumour reappeared less than a year later.
Further life-saving surgery resulted in her suffering a stroke, leaving her unable to walk or feed herself.
But University of Chester graduate Hannah is now doing well and has thrown herself into campaigning for greater research to be conducted into brain tumours.
She and her fellow Young Ambassadors – all of whom have either been treated for a brain tumour or have lost a close relative to the disease – met Emma McClarkin, Member of the European Parliament for the East Midlands, to discuss their experiences.
They also visited the office of the European Cancer Patient Coalition (ECPC).
Hannah said: “We discussed our personal stories with Emma McClarkin, the importance of data collection and raised the issue that brain tumours still remain the biggest cancer killer amongst the under 40s, yet research is still lagging behind many other cancers.
“Great progress was also made with the ECPC. UK brain tumour patients alone cannot promote change although it is down to us to encourage individuals across Europe who have been affected by brain tumours to lobby their MEPs.
“The Government need to realise the importance and benefits of brain tumour research and early diagnosis.”
Hannah’s trip came just ahead of Brain Tumour Awareness Month, which runs throughout March.
The Brain Tumour Charity’s chief executive Sarah Lindsell, who travelled with the group to Brussels, said: “Our Young Ambassadors’ stories are a powerful reminder of why we need more research into brain tumours and better treatments for the disease.
“We will continue to push at every level, both within the UK and more widely, for progress towards out twin goals of doubling survival and halving the harm caused by brain tumours.”