“If you want others to be happy, practice compassion. If you want to be happy practice compassion. Love and compassion are necessities, not luxuries. Without them, humanity cannot survive.” – His Holiness the Dalai Lama addressing the audience on the main stage at Glastonbury 2015.

With the growing global awareness and increasing discoveries of the true medicinal properties of the Cannabis Sativa plant, in particular reference to the use of cannabis oil as a potential safe and effective treatment for cancer, the demand for cannabis oil has never been higher.

Nearly 90% of our messages at MMJ, and most messages to our colleagues at CISTA, UPA and Bud Buddies relate to the demand for cannabis oil; cancer patients and their friends and family desperately seeking a cure or some relief from chemotherapy, parents of epileptic children in search of CBD rich cannabis oil, Crohn’s patients suffering from pain with every meal, MS patients unable to afford the £500 pounds for the 0.5 grams of oil in a Sativex bottle just to name a few.

Although most evidence relating to cancer is anecdotal at this stage (current legal restrictions on research mean that most research is in vitro or related to mice), individual success stories such as David Hibbitt’s publicised in national media and the fact that an average of 350,000 people will be diagnosed with cancer this year in the UK (50% facing mortality) only make the search for cannabis oil more desperate.

The most common accepted dosage for cancer patients as advised by Jeff Ditchfield (founder of Bud Buddies UK and the inspiration behind UK CCC’s) is 1 gram of Decarboxylated 1:1 oil per day for 90 days. Now given the fact that it takes 7-10 grams of raw cannabis flower to make 1 gram of oil, and a gram of raw cannabis can cost anything from £10 -£25, full “treatments” can end up costing upwards of £2,000.

To someone dying of cancer or suffering from the side effects of chemotherapy, the lack of any central information source or regulatory framework of product testing (unlike the USA) and the mortal timeframe considered, the search for the right or trusted source along with the cost, can become an emotional and economic minefield.

Tragic stories highlighted in Project Storm of Stage 4 of cancer patients looking for hope and  spending their final savings on low strength oil, mothers, daughters and families clubbing together only to be ripped off by someone offering them a cure.  The multitude of scammers praying on families searching for hope, combined with a wholly capitalistic and secular society that we live in, make the idea of growing a plant (anyone live in Durham?),  and providing cannabis oil for free an alien concept.

Out of this quagmire comes the unlikely rise of the UK CCC’s. Cannabis Compassion Clubs are local community run clubs that dispense free cannabis (donations accepted) medicine to people in need. They are not on Facebook or the internet, they are in the local community around you. They are not run for profit or do not make claims on being able to cure you. They are not a brand and you won’t find them advertised. They provide access to cannabis oil and dispatch medical clones locally. There may be one on your street, you might even know a member already. MMJ has reports of 36 current clubs operating across the UK.

Compassion clubs are not a new thing, the B.C Compassion Clubs running in Canada for eighteen years behind the law now operate lawfully and provide a body of medical care and access across the whole of Canada. The BC Compassion club’s core value states that “Compassion has called us to engage in civil disobedience because the current laws fail to make medicinal marijuana available for those in need. Cannabis is an important therapeutic plant that must be readily accessible”. The UK CCC’s are run in the same manner and for the same reason, the idea being that people with access to cannabis are the ones who can make a difference to the terminally ill and those in pain by providing a medicine that is not available yet through conventional means. Even with the Washington Post reporting on St.George’s University London’s discovery of cannabis as potential treatment of cancer, the UK government remain stalwart in denying the medicinal benefits of the Cannabis plant. Legal access especially for cancer patients remains a moot and moral point.

Every week, we hear heart-warming stories; stories of pensioners setting up grows in cul-de-sacs to supply their cancer ridden neighbours. People like Mike Cutler and others just like him who have had no previous experience with the Cannabis plant suddenly dedicating their lives to learning, growing cannabis and supporting their local community, NHS nurses like Sandra Smith, cancer ridden yet coming off pharmaceutical drugs through the use of cannabis oil and calling on the Government to legalise cannabis and reschedule it for medical purposes.  CCC’s, all over the country, are now providing tinctures, oils and butters often for donations but mostly for free to people in need .

We spoke to founding member Mr Glen Peas of the King’s Cross CCC:

“What we wanted to do was to help people whilst changing the notion and nature of how the public view the cannabis plant. From a drug that gets you high and that you buy to a plant that you, your neighbours and community have readily accessible for cancer patients  today, to take this plant away from profiteering gangsters and dealers, and put it in every community in the UK through the art of compassion. We hope our model  can go out across the world and  start supporting  local communities today, so that when it’s your mother, brother or cousin that’s diagnosed with a life threatening disease there’s a CCC already there to provide them access with medicine where the NHS won’t. That medicine could save their lives and people with access to cannabis can provide it. Our apoptosis for your high.”

There are some UKCSC’s operating already that now have CCC’s running within them. Orson Wells the head of the London Cannabis Clubs stated, “It’s a wonderful idea, I can see it flourishing.”  According to our source CCC’s come with a basic set of guidelines.

These are as follows:

1. Cannabis Oil is a medicine you make it for your neighbour.

2. Cannabis Oil is a medicine you make it for your community.

3. Cannabis Oil can save and improve lives in your community today.

4. DECARBOXYLATION

5. CCC’s are not on Facebook or the internet, they are local and in your community.

6. A CCC is made up of a minimum of 3 people donating a gram a week.

7. CCC’s meet once a week in the local community.

8. CCC’s democratically choose their patients and may donate publically or privately.

9. CCC’s can save lives; you start with cannabutter and learn more.

10. The larger the CCC the more good it can do.

11. Cannabis oil is a medicine and is not made or sold for profit.

12. Onwards and Upwards.

Are you a member of a CCC? Is there one running local to you? Would you consider starting one? It takes 3 people and access to any type of cannabis to start one…..