LIFE SAVED BY SELFIE: Derby cancer fighter's tale inspires women's-only event

Posted: November 10, 2014

ORGANISERS of a women's-only fund-raising event said they were inspired to hold it after hearing the story of a young woman who discovered she had cancer  because of a no-make-up selfie.

Jackie Nicholas was asked by a friend to pose for the photo – and a link was then attached to it with details on how to check for cancer when it was uploaded online.

Derby College lecturer Jackie, of Osmaston, then checked for signs of the disease and, to her horror, found a lump.

She was diagnosed with breast cancer and has since lost her hair undergoing chemotherapy – but she is having more of the treatment while trying to launch a dance school at the same time.

Two women, Tracey Bricknell and Jude Weston, said they were so touched by the 35-year-old's story that they decided to hold an event in her name to raise funds for wig makeovers and treats for women with cancer.

The fund-raising night will be held at the marquee at Derbyshire County Cricket Club on Friday, November 28. Tickets have gone on sale.

Tracey, 50, of Findern, said: "Cancer hits people of all ages and when you hear about people getting it at a young age, it really makes you think. My mother and mother-in-law both died from cancer too.

"It's a dreadful disease and I do not want to see people go through it because it is horrendous. The night is very special and a lot of the Derby businesses have been very generous in supporting it.

"It is a lot of hard work, but all worthwhile. It's important to keep raising awareness and highlight the importance of cancer checks."

Jackie said she was really pleased Tracey and Jude, who have been organising events for 10 years, had decided to hold this one.

She said: "I feel overwhelmed with the support from the pair. It's very humbling that they are doing it out of the goodness of their heart."

Jackie is now waiting for breast reconstruction. She also continues to teach at Dynamicmotif – a dance and performing arts academy in Risley.

She said: "I'm trying my best to live as normal a life as I can, after somebody said I should prepare for a year of hell.

"I'm going out for meals and just want to carry on working and getting on. I'm feeling pretty well and good, despite going through it.

"I'm at the halfway point of my chemotherapy and I have been feeling sleepy. The chemotherapy is there to try and now get rid of all the badness inside me."

Posted September 14, 2014

A WOMAN who nominated her friend to take a selfie without make-up said she is overjoyed that it led to her pal's life being saved.

Nicola Aldred asked Jackie Nicholas to pose for the photo – and attached a link with details on how to check for cancer.

Derby College lecturer Jackie, of Osmaston  then checked and, to her horror, found a lump. After the cancer was confirmed she is now in remission and her chemotherapy began on Thursday.

Nicola, 32, of Ockbrook, said: "I feel quite overwhelmed that it led to her being diagnosed.

"When Jackie told me I was a life-saver it just made me glad I nominated her.

"I didn't think anything of it at the time but it has turned out to be the power of social media at its best. I think Jackie looks beautiful with or without make-up."

Jackie, who was diagnosed in May, said she thinks more should be done to highlight other forms of cancer.

The 35-year-old said: "The more people that do these kind of crazes the better, because it is all about raising awareness. Breast cancer is a very well-funded disease but other types do not get the same kind of publicity.

"For pancreatic cancer you do not hear about the signs and symptoms as much. The same is for liver cancer.

"There should definitely be more awareness and that could include another craze using social media."

Yesterday, talking the day before the treatment, she said: "I've woken up this morning and I'm a little bit nervous, because it is scary."

Jackie was too frightened to do anything about it after finding the lump and went ahead with a planned holiday to Paris with husband Tom, a teacher.

She told him about the lump on holiday and they went to a clinic as soon as they could on their return. After visiting the clinic it was later confirmed as cancer.

Jackie's treatment is predicted to be completed in February to March next year.

Before her diagnosis, Jackie had plans to launch her own dance school. They are now back on track. Dynamicmotif is a dance and performing arts academy in Risley.

The academy offers lessons in ballet, contemporary dance, junior performing arts and adult dance.

Jackie said: "I believe in going for it and it's been a big focus for me when dealing with being diagnosed. I really want to be a role model and to inspirechildren to get into dance and do well."

For more information on times and dates for the dance school Jackie can be e-mailed at






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