What’s the project?

Our One-to-one service is a telephone support service that offers anyone with prostate cancer or disease the chance to talk to someone who has been through a similar experience. The telephone service is provided by our specially trained volunteers who listen to the caller’s concerns and share their experiences to offer support and reassurance.

The development of our One-to-one service from 2012-15 was funded by the Movember Foundation.

How does it work?

Anyone affected by prostate cancer who wants to talk to someone who has been through a similar experience can request to speak to one of our trained support volunteers by calling us or completing an online form. We match those users to one of our volunteers to ensure that they talk to someone whose experience is most relevant to their situation.

How was it evaluated?

The most recent evaluation of the one-to-one service was carried out in March 2014. We conducted telephone interviews with service users and the volunteers providing the service, collected feedback from service users via a paper questionnaire and collected feedback from volunteers via an online questionnaire.

I got a lot of really useful advice on the sort of questions I ought to ask my doctors when I eventually got around to seeing them.

What did we learn?

  • The evaluation found that both the users and volunteers were very satisfied with the service and the results of their involvement.
  • The callers benefit from support and get peace of mind from talking to someone who has been through a similar experience and who can explain in plain English what they can expect from certain treatments and the side effects they may experience. Often patients feel confused after talking to a medical professional, but talking to someone who can explain their experience of a treatment and what it meant is seen as incredibly valuable and helpful.
  • Both the users and the volunteers felt that sharing experiences is extremely beneficial for men who are feeling concerned or anxious following diagnosis. It is also thought that just talking to someone who has been through treatment and is still alive ten or fifteen years later is comforting for the service user.
  • Our volunteers get a great deal of satisfaction from providing this service to those who are going through a difficult time.

What will we do now?

We will continue to offer this service. In response to user and volunteer feedback we are making changes to increase users’ access to the service and our processes for matching volunteers with callers. We are also seeking to increase the number and types of volunteers available to support callers to ensure it is relevant to more men and their families who need it.

How can I find out more?

  • Call our Specialist Nurses on 0800 074 8383 (Text relay prefix - 18001) to ask to speak to a One-to-one support volunteer or fill in our form.
Read the report (PDF)