Latest News
16 June 2023

From submarines to support! 

Local BAE Systems engineer Steve Ottley has been committing his Fridays to supporting local people that need it the most.

Latest News
16 June 2023

CancerCare has over 60 therapists working across North Lancashire and South Cumbria; one of those is Steve Ottley, a counsellor at our centre in Barrow.

In 1989 Steve Ottley was working at BAE Systems (then VSEL) when he decided to further his education by studying engineering at university in Liverpool. During his time in the city, Steve received counselling himself – something that sparked a passion for helping people and inspired him to enroll on counselling training. After qualifying, Steve used his skills to gain experience as a counsellor in the bereavement centre in Manchester Royal Infirmary.

Steve, who was brought up in Cumbria, returned to the area in 2012 and went back to his roots at BAE Systems. After fixing submarines for eight years, he spotted a flexible counselling vacancy that had arisen at CancerCare.

“When I saw the vacancy to become part of CancerCare I didn’t hesitate. My background is in bereavement counselling, so it seemed like a good fit for me and I’m happy to say that it was a really good decision and I feel lucky and privileged to be part of the team. The services that CancerCare offers are priceless and the impact changes people’s lives for the better – who wouldn’t want to be a part of that?” said Steve.

Steve joined the team in 2020 but continued his love for engineering at BAE. Whilst working Monday to Thursday on the subs, Steve commits his Fridays to seeing clients in Barrow.

“Grief and loss are universal experiences, especially during the recent pandemic. To play a part in helping people to make sense of it, and come to terms with it, feels like such a worthwhile thing to do. CancerCare’s values and beliefs are very close to my own, and this enables me to do something that I feel passionate about in a supportive, professional environment. The vibe at the Barrow centre is great, I always look forward to Fridays,” said Steve.

Over the two years Steve has been with CancerCare, he has offered over 200 sessions which has had a significant impact on the people he’s supported.

To find out more about counselling and the services we provide click here:

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