Learner battling illness becomes a published author

Cynthia Evanson

Cynthia Evanson has shown how learning can be a positive and therapeutic outlet while battling adversity, and has gone on to write a children's book to raise funds for a cause dear to her heart.


Cynthia joined a sewing and home crafts class at our Bolsover Adult Community Education Centre in 2013 as a means of respite from her cancer diagnosis.

While on her course Cynthia discovered a love for this creative subject and in being part of the supportive learning group. Her tutor, Elizabeth Fanthom, tells us that Cynthia has developed many creative skills and talents from decorative crafts, to making fabulous dresses and delightful little figures.

On her class, Cynthia created some wonderful animal characters that inspired her to write a Children's book "Mortimer Mouse Messes Up". Cynthia's sister Maggie Fielding, who had also been fighting illness, created wonderful illustrations to accompany the story. The sisters have had the book published to raise funds for the Chesterfield Royal Macmillan Cancer Centre Appeal. Cynthia and Maggie have also been sharing their story and experiences by giving talks at local community groups and Cynthia's achievements were recognised at our 2016 Adult Learners' Week celebrations.

Her tutor states that

"Cynthia is and always has been a valued and inspirational member of the group and to everyone that knows her."

Cynthia says

"It is amazing how life throws into our paths things which we never expect. Three years ago all I did was join a sewing class to help me through illness, and what I gained was a group of good friends, a real desire to sew and create things including some little animals which then inspired me to write a book for children. This is now being sold for the new cancer centre at Chesterfield Royal Hospital. I am so grateful to everyone for their help."