The Big Tea Cosy

"Get together with friends and have a tea party to raise money for breast cancer support", said The Haven. "And do it now because we're having a special fundraising week : The Big Tea Cosy".

The thing is, last week was dead busy and I was pretty stressed... but out of all the cancer charities, The Haven is a favourite. So when they speak, I listen (OMG have I made them into my Mum?! Scratch that, my German teacher in Secondary School I reckon.)

They are pretty cool. They don't sponsor research into drugs (some of us are uncomfortable with Big Pharma - read breast cancer survivor Nicola's perspective here and here on the scruples of campaigns), but they offer free practical therapies and personalised support to those affected by breast cancer.

The three UK Haven centres are so-called because...

"Each Haven exudes warmth, comfort and safety – far removed from the hospital environment that anyone who has been through the trauma of a life-threatening disease will find important."

It's one thing to be diagnosed with a life-threatening illness, and have to undergo gruelling treatment, but to also go through the often dehumanising mechanical procedures and manage necessary but clinical relationships, in cold, lonely surroundings...well, it can rub salt into the emotional wound. A welcoming place of refuge and safety is a much needed gift.

So with a Tesco mentality ('every little helps') I got it together, and invited friends round at short notice -  bless all those who managed to pop in on a busy Friday morning! We had a right laugh and raised just over £50.

And, in this spirit of generosity, I pass on my recipe for Cashew/Coconut Protein Balls. They don't sound that appetising, but I can assure you they are in fact miracles of delicious awesomeness.

Blend or whizz all this together (except dessicated coconut)...

1/4 cup soaked cashew nuts

1 /2 cup soaked dates

1/4 cup dessicated coconut

1 scoop Sun Warrior protein powder

bit of vanilla extract

2 tablespoons cashew nut butter

1 tablespoon coconut oil

Shape into (walnut-sized) balls, roll in dessicated coconut and put in freezer for half an hour to set. They are then fine to eat or keep in the fridge in a container for a week or so.

Great for when you need a sweet snack but don't want to go all weird and floppy from sugar (excuse layman's terms). In this instance, I offer no pictures because I had run out of dessicated coconut and frankly they looked like poo (again, excuse layman's terms). Tasted amazing though.

Karen Dobres, Chief Freedom Fighter