CELEBRATIONS were afoot in Newport as Specsavers held a party for the Teenage Cancer Trust Cymru to mark the charity’s 10th anniversary and the start of a two-year fundraising partnership.

Since 2009, Teenage Cancer Trust Cymru has provided life-changing support and services to hundreds of young people aged 13 to 24 with cancer.

To kick-start the fundraising activities, staff at Specsavers in Newport held a party in-store, encouraging customers to join its celebrations of the Trust’s important work in Wales.

The Newport opticians have joined forces with 38 other Specsavers stores across south and mid Wales in a bid to raise £30,000 in the first year of its two-year partnership with the charity. The funds raised will help towards creating a second Wales-based youth support coordinator job, whose responsibilities would include organising activities, trips and social opportunities for young cancer patients.

Teenage Cancer Trust supports young people with the help of expert nurses, support teams, and hospital units, including one at the University Hospital of Wales.

Craig Mackenzie, Specsavers store director in Newport, said: "It’s a sad reality that cancer has a devastating impact on the lives of thousands of families in Wales, particularly if a young person is affected with the disease.

"Teenage Cancer Trust Cymru is a remarkable charity that aims to improve the quality of life of everyone that uses its services, which is why we’re pledging to support the charity in hope that our donations will help towards creating a new job that will positively impact young people and their families who are going through such a traumatic time.

"We’re honoured to launch our new partnership at a time when the charity is recognising all that it has achieved over the last 10 years."

Debbie Jones, regional fundraising manager, South Wales at Teenage Cancer Trust, said: "Cancer can throw young people's lives into chaos, leaving them feeling isolated, scared and out of control. It can have a lasting impact on their future, even for those who recover.

"Teenage Cancer Trust puts young people in the best possible place, physically, mentally and emotionally, for their cancer treatment and beyond.

"We can’t express how grateful we are to Specsavers for its pledge to support us in ensuring no young person faces cancer alone. Their support could make sure each of them gets the consistent, sensitive, individual nursing care and support they need, throughout their cancer treatment and beyond."