Aileen Lamb is passionate about Tourism and promoting Scotland. She is an award winning business connector, Tourism Manager for Scottish Enterprise, Co-Host of #ScotlandHour and more recently she has become an ambassador for Bloodwise – an established UK cancer charity that has been beating blood cancers since 1960.
In September 2015 Aileen received the life changing news that she had Acute Meyloid Leukaemia. Not one to sit around and mope she decided to tackle cancer head on, to make a series of goals to get her through what was going to be a mammoth year ahead. Throughout her journey (which you can read all about on her blog turbanoftheday.wordpress.com), Bloodwise were a constant support. They provided information and advice and helped her along every step of the way.
Now an ambassador for Bloodwise, Aileen is fundraising to help the charity undertake groundbreaking research in the fight against 137 different types of blood cancer.
1. What is the single most important thing that you have learned about yourself this past year?
That I can be patient (when it really matters).
2. What piece of advice would you give someone who has recently been diagnosed with cancer?
Deal with it how you want to. There is no ‘right’ way. Don’t expect people to know what you want them to do. Ask for the help that you need and want and family and friends will be only too glad to offer it. If you can, understand your diagnosis and prognosis. Knowledge is power. Take charge of your health – this will help the healthcare professionals help you to the best of their ability.
3. Why is it so important for people to give blood?
Blood donations have a ‘shelf life’ so stocks require to be constantly replenished. We know surgery, emergencies and mums giving blood (and new babies) often need blood. However did you know I had 44 units of blood transfused into me in six months to keep me alive whilst having chemotherapy to treat my leukaemia. Blood products keep patients like me alive every day. Find out more about giving blood.
4. Can you tell us about your latest fundraising event, which is in collaboration with Travel Massive Edinburgh?
The event is a Grand Christmas Draw with amazing prizes donated by friends and colleagues from across the tourism & hospitality, art and food & drink world. We’ll raise funds for Maggie’s Centre, Edinburgh and Bloodwise Scotland – both charities have supported me and my family whilst I underwent treatment. Bloodwise will continue their life saving research and we’ll help Maggie’s by contributing to the Edinburgh centres extension plans so that they can support more people and families through cancer.
I’m going to resume travelling. From February 2017 I’ll be allowed to fly long-haul again so Africa, USA & maybe even Australia are on the cards. I plan to continue to increase my hours at work and become involved again in working with Scotland’s amazing tourism industry. I’ll celebrate being married for 10 years to my wonderful husband, Steve. And, I will do more to raise awareness and funds for Bloodwise & Maggie’s Centres.
And just for fun…
6. What song do you sing in the shower?
‘Paradise by the dashboard light’ by Meatloaf – because its fun and means I can spend 8.5 minutes in the shower, and ‘The Climb’ by Mylie Cyrus – this song motivated me particularly when I spent weeks in isolation having chemo.
7. How would your friends describe you?
8. If you could witness any event in history, which one would it be and why?
Nelson Mandela’s release from Robben Island in 1987. Nelson Mandela had so much grace. We should all aim to live our lives following his example.
9. Where is your most favourite place in Scotland?
The Faery Isles, Loch Sween, Nr Tayvallich, Argyll
10. What is your favourite quote?
“Turn your face to the sun and the shadows will fall behind you”. Unknown.
How you can help
The Grand Christmas Draw is taking place at the Edinburgh Travel Massive event on Tuesday 6th December 2016 at the Royal Yacht Britannia. You can sign up for the event on their website.
There are some fabulous prizes for the raffle including an overnight stay at The Roxburghe Hotel, a Boozy Snoozy dinner for four people at The Bonham, a 3 day tour of Ireland for two people with Shamrocker Adventures, a private dorm room for 2 people for 2 nights at Morag’s Lodge in Loch Ness, a weekend break for two at Gartmore House in Stirling and many many more.
Tickets for the raffle are £5. If you can’t make it to the event you are still welcome to buy raffle tickets.
Simply complete the form below and we will get in touch.
You can follow Aileen on Twitter – @AileenLamb