Thursday 19th October 2017
Students across Guernsey recently learned about cancer, how to spot symptoms and breaking down the myths, as our Education and Awareness team held their annual Education Week on the island. Lindsay Wilson from the team traveled to Guernsey to give presentations in schools, aimed to help young people feel more comfortable talking about cancer.
Lindsay, our Education and Awareness Programme Manager, spent time with students of five of the island’s schools – La Mare High, Ladies College, Les Beaucamps, Blanchelande College and Grammar School – teaching the students about the effects cancer can have on a young person, as well as empowering them to know their own bodies, recognise any changes and seek help if they are worried.
The presentations also provided the young people with the knowledge of how to reduce their risk of cancer later in life and encouraged them to make healthy lifestyle choices.
Karen Higgs, Head of PSHE & Careers at Blanchelande College said “Blanchelande College has welcomed Lindsay in for the last six years to raise awareness of cancer and the work of Teenage Cancer Trust. It has been invaluable and extremely informative for both students and staff. Lindsay has a warm and open approach that really engages the classes. I sincerely hope we are lucky enough to continue to have her visit in future years.”
Research in 2015 by University of Sterling showed that students were three times more likely to talk about cancer after a Teenage Cancer Trust education presentation, awareness of risk factors grew by up to 26%, and awareness of warning signs grew by 36%.
We have received huge support from the local communities on Guernsey since the Teenage Cancer Trust Guernsey Appeal was launched in 2011, by a group of local volunteers. The money raised helped build our unit in Southampton for young people from the Channel Islands and South of England, who can now receive their treatment in an age appropriate environment instead of on a young children’s ward or an adult ward.
The unit was officially opened in 2013 and cost over £2.4 million to build with £300K raised in Guernsey alone. On-going funding is now required for the both running costs of the unit and to fund specialist medical staff and support workers, as well as Lindsay’s free cancer awareness programme in schools and colleges.