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Project to support young people affected by cancer

04 February 2021

The Government of Jersey (through the Jersey Youth Service) is partnering with Jersey Cancer Relief to identify and develop support for children and young people who are affected by a cancer diagnosis in their family or home life.

Jersey Cancer Relief will fund a youth worker from My Time for Young Carers (My Time) to carry out the project. Ciaran Doherty will work with families, schools, and young people to identify how far current support meets the needs of young people and identify any gaps.

The project is being launched on World Cancer Day (4 February). World Cancer Day aims to raise awareness of the disease, improve education, and reduce the global impact of cancer. In Jersey, an average of just over 1000 cases of malignant cancers are detected each year.

The six-month project has been funded by Jersey Cancer Relief. In phase one, My Time will focus on speaking with young people and their families to identify their needs. In phase two, the findings of the first phase will be used to trail new support systems, and review them with the affected young people.

Anne Pryke, Chair of Jersey Cancer Relief, said: “We’re very pleased to be able to financially support the Youth Service for this valuable piece of work, especially today, on World Cancer Day. 

“We know that when there’s a diagnosis of cancer in a family, everyone in that family is affected. But any diagnosis has a specific impact on young people. The Youth Service are well-placed to take on this project because they have a well-established network, and an understanding of young people’s needs.” 

Youth Worker, Ciaran Doherty, who will be leading the project, said: “I’m proud to be working on this project with Jersey Cancer Relief, because it’s so important that young people are supported.

“While we know there are lots of support mechanisms out there, we also know that not all young people who act as carers, or who are affected by a cancer diagnosis, are accessing support. This project will help us reach them.”

Mark Capern, Principal Youth Officer, said: “We know from our work through My Time that young people benefit from support that is tailored to suit them and their needs. Ensuring they can access that support is key to helping them flourish in the future.”
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