Liverpool Sunflowers has been supporting people and their families through cancer, for over thirty years. Our history is one of a passion to help others alongside always doing the best we can when providing our services.
Founded in 1986, Sunflowers was set up by a group of people with something in common: each had been affected by cancer. As a result, a self-help support group (Liverpool Cancer Care) emerged to support those with similar experiences. This group continued to grow until it became Sunflowers in 2011.
The charity received annual funding from the NHS up until 2018, at which time the NHS made huge cuts to all voluntary sector funding. Since then we have been funded entirely by donations and grants.
The services we offer have developed over the years to reflect the changing needs of people affected by cancer. In 1986 we started off with just one support group, to which was added counselling and massage. In 2015 the charity took a huge leap forward, extended opening hours and added a host of classes including Yoga, Tai Chi, Pilates, Mindfulness and Breathworks.
In 2018, in response to the NHS funding cut, the centre opened up services to people affected by serious health conditions other than cancer, further increasing the number of people we could support.
In 2020 we were one of the first local charities to respond to the Covid crisis by moving all possible services to telephone/ online, and we gained a strong reputation for being an organisation which kept going during lockdown.
When we were able to properly reopen our Centre in May 2021 we were met with a huge increase in demand for our services, requiring us to massively increase our volunteer base. Prior to Covid we used to have 3 volunteer counsellors, currently our team is around 27 strong. We also increased our opening hours to include two evenings a week, plus weekend sessions.
Today our service is busier than it has ever been and the charity continues to offer vital support to local people in the post pandemic world, as always adapting and increasing services to meet demand.