When Steve Coupe and wife Tracey witnessed those around them suffering from the devastating effects of cancer they decided to set up their own charity to help others in a similar position.
The couple formed Cancer Relief UK in 2008 to assist cancer sufferers who experience financial hardship during their illness. They managed to raise £87,000 in the first year through donations and promotional events.
The charity is based in Clay Cross and has a shop on Granby Street in Ilkeston called Cash for Clobber.
Steve said: “It has grown and grown since we began and we now have around 20 volunteers.
“Tracey’s mum, dad and two sisters were all diagnosed with cancer, and my best friend, John Blake, died of cancer five years ago.
Steve said it felt great to be able to affect people affected by cancer: “You can’t beat it. You get some stories that don’t work out but overall it’s nice to put a smile on some people’s faces.”
“We are one of the only charities that give out cash. We do it to help people through their chemo treatment, so they can get to the hospital without that extra burden. It’s an extra stress they can do without.
Despite experiencing a bad year donation wise in 2012, the charity is now back-on track: “It’s gathering momentum all the time,’ said Steve, adding that money doesn’t all get swallowed up in admin.