Natalie Wild featuring in an ovarian cancer symptoms billboard in Old Street

The advert that saved a life: Natalie and Leanne’s story – one year on

Since sharing her sister Leanne’s story, Natalie has had national impact by increasing awareness of the symptoms of ovarian cancer and raising money for Target Ovarian Cancer.

We set out to save one person’s life by raising awareness so that Leanne's death wasn't in vain.

Symptoms awareness is vital to improving early diagnosis.   

We know that only one in five women know the key symptom of ovarian cancer – bloating. 

We know that 46% of GPs believe ovarian cancer presents in the late stages.  

We know that more needs to be done.  

Not Your Sister 

Natalie Wild is one woman determined to make sure everyone recognises the symptoms of ovarian cancer. And that GPs are alert to them.  

Why? Because just eight days after being diagnosed with ovarian cancer, Natalie’s sister, Leanne, tragically lost her life to the disease. It was three weeks before Christmas.  

Leanne, Natalie and Grace smiling and looking at the camera

Leanne had been visiting her GP for 20 months with symptoms.  

Over the last year, Natalie has bravely shared her sister’s story with us and the nation. She has fronted our symptoms awareness campaign, which has featured on billboards in major cities across England and in newspapers and magazines. 

She has spoken passionately about what needs to be done to help the future generations of women, address late diagnosis, and increase GP knowledge of ovarian cancer. 


Through Natalie’s campaigning, Leanne’s legacy has been lifesaving.  

  • There have been over 635 million opportunities to see the symptoms of ovarian cancer 

  • Billboard adverts donated by City Outdoor Media reached around 85million people  

  • Donated adverts featured in magazines and newspapers reached 83 million people  

  • 400,000 people read Leanne’s story, told by Natalie, in the Yorkshire Post, Woman’s Own and Chat magazines 

  • 37,000 people listened to what action needs to be taken in an interview on BBC Radio Sheffield 

  • £13,568 was raised by #NotYourSister, our Christmas fundraising appeal, featuring Natalie and Leanne’s story   

  • A film was created capturing Leanne’s heartbreaking story, which reached 60,000 people across Target Ovarian Cancer’s digital channels   

  • The money raised has gone towards our GP training programme and providing support to women with ovarian cancer and their families 

The end result? A life has been saved.   

When I was told that someone had received an early diagnosis because of seeing the charity’s advert with my face and message on, I burst into tears. This is why I got involved with Target Ovarian Cancer. To save more sisters’ lives. To make sure no-one experienced what Leanne experienced. So that women get a diagnosis as early as possible. And that’s why I’ll never stop. I’ll never stop campaigning and fundraising.

The advert that saved lives  

Natalie outside Target Ovarian Cancer awareness billboard by Meadowhall shopping centre

One of the adverts donated by City Outdoor Media is located in Sheffield, along a busy route into the city centre. 

This advert has had an incredible impact. Natalie was told by one woman it had ‘saved her life.’ Seeing the advert on her way to and from work, the symptoms listed -persistent bloating, abdominal pain, needing to wee more often and feeling full quickly – resonated with her. 

This prompted her to take a photo of the billboard advert and visit A&E. She showed the photo of the billboard to the staff and told them she was experiencing them, and was concerned it was ovarian cancer. She was soon diagnosed with stage 1 ovarian cancer and given the treatment she needed.  .

Hearing Natalie's story is truly heart-warming and embodies the positive impact we aspire for our screens to deliver. We have partnered with Target Ovarian Cancer for eight years and the mission was always to hopefully  one day hear of a positive outcome in a woman's life. We are delighted that Natalie’s story has come to our attention, and we hope to hear more in the future years to come. Natalie reminds us of the profound impact outdoor advertising can have on people's lives, and we are proud to be a part of campaigns that can make a real difference to the people within our communities.

Charlie Thorp, Managing Director at City Outdoor Media

This is one woman’s story we have been told of. It shows the vital importance of symptoms awareness and the impact that can have on helping women to get an early diagnosis.  

What’s next for Natalie?

Having educated ourselves we have been able to educate others.  It's only by talking to people you realise how many are unaware of the symptoms of ovarian cancer and it needs to be an ongoing conversation. In the days of GP inaccessibility it's good to have places you can take your questions and that's why we love the space Target Ovarian Cancer provides for women. Our billboard story provides proof that the campaign works and saved one life that we know of. There may be others and that is what our fight is for now. It would be easy to lay down and be angry and sad in equal measure but that achieves nothing. Getting out there and talking and keeping Leanne’s memory alive hopefully means we can keep others alive. 

Natalie will continue to raise awareness of the symptoms, by whatever means. She has hosted regular awareness days in her community and become involved in discussion and support groups.  

What’s more, since Leanne has passed away Natalie and her family have raised £6,000 for Target Ovarian Cancer which goes towards our work into improving early diagnosis, providing support to women and their families and research. 

Leanne smiling at camera wearing a pink top

It was my sister who lost her life to ovarian cancer, but it could’ve been anyone’s. Knowing Leanne’s story is saving other families from the pain we experienced, is the comfort we need.