Posted on Thursday 26 August 2021

in News

£375,000 grant awarded to Young Lives vs Cancer by Community Foundation Northern Ireland

The Community Foundation Northern Ireland has today (August, 26) allocated £7.95m in funding from the Department of Health to support the community here in response to the Coronavirus pandemic through the Cancer Charities’ Support Fund.

As part of the funding, Young Lives vs Cancer will receive £375,000 to help reach and support more young people living with cancer and their families in Northern Ireland.

Simon Darby, Social Work Team Leader for Young Lives vs Cancer welcomed the news of the grant and the difference it will make to young people with cancer in Northern Ireland

Simon Darby, Young Lives vs Cancer Social Work Team Leader, said: “This is wonderful news for us to have received this support locally to deliver a new digital resilience tool for young people on cancer treatment, as well as expand our award-winning exercise programme to other CrossFit gyms across Northern Ireland.

“We hope to expand our CrossFit based exercise programme to five more cities and towns in Northern Ireland. This will allow us to bring exercise to more young people including their parents, siblings, partners and even grandparents.

“The monies over the next two years, will enable us as a charity to continue to reduce the impact of cancer on the lives of children, young people and their families.”

The funds were announced by Health Minister Robin Swann in May as part of a £24m funding package to support carers, cancer, and mental health organisations. A number of the 14 projects funded are already underway or starting later this year.

The Cancer Charities’ Support Fund opened for applications of between £30,000 and £1m and will provide support grants to 14 projects. The funding will support prevention through awareness raising, further develop palliative care, and enhance the provision of support for cancer patients and their families.

Welcoming the initial grant payments to cancer charities, amounting to £7.95m, the Minister said: “I know this funding will make a real difference to the lives of people living with cancer, and their families.

“Cancer charities across Northern Ireland provide vital services to so many people and I understand the very serious impact that the pandemic had had on their ability to sustain and expand services.

“Alongside the current public consultation on the ten-year Cancer Strategy, launched earlier this week, and my Department’s cancer recovery plan, there is a renewed focus on ensuring that everyone in Northern Ireland has equitable and timely access to the most effective, evidence-based referral, diagnosis, treatment, support and person centred cancer care.”

Commenting on the success of the funds, Community Foundation Chief Executive, Roisin Wood said: “The Community Foundation is delighted with the phenomenal response to these important funds, which will provide £7.95 million to organisations supporting people with cancer here.

“The funds will be available for three years, thereby making an impact over a longer period of time, which we know will create a meaningful difference in the lives of many. Smaller grants across the Cancer Charities’ Support Fund will open in September, and applications can be made online.

“Not surprising in the current climate, we were heavily oversubscribed with applications and the projects seeking support clearly highlight the need for this fund and more support for carers and people with cancer. In total 75% of those who applied have received funding.

“However, we realise some projects will be disappointed today, and we would encourage them to bid when the next rounds of funding open next month, and to really think about how they undertake their applications to ensure they meet the stringent criteria for funding.”

Imelda McGucken, MBE Charis Cancer Care Centre Director said: “Through this funding, we will be able to offer our counselling, aromatherapy, massage, reflexology and a range of mindfulness and meditation sessions as well as group yoga to clients. Our services are available to any adult at any stage of their cancer journey via a personal or loved one’s diagnosis completely free of charge.”

In addition, new funding applications for the next round of support from the Cancer Charities’ Support Fund of £5,000 to £30,000, will open next month. Interested organisations who wish to apply can access applications and criteria via the Community Foundation website from September.

Notes to Editor

About cancer in children and young people

Today, 12 more children and young people in the UK will hear the devastating news that they have cancer. Treatment normally starts immediately, is often given many miles from home and can last for up to three years. Although survival rates are over 80%, cancer remains the single largest cause of death from disease in children and young people in the UK.

About Young Lives vs Cancer

When a child is diagnosed with cancer life becomes full of fear, for them and their family. Fear of treatment but also of families being torn apart, overwhelming money worries, of having nowhere to turn to, no one to talk to.

Young Lives vs Cancer is the charity that helps children and young people (0-25) and their families find the strength to face whatever cancer throws at them. The charity’s social workers offer specialist, empowering support, its Homes from Home offer families a free place to stay nearby to the child’s hospital and grants help families to navigate the costs of cancer. We’ve been there before. We’ll face it all, together.

For more information visit

Note to sub editors

Always use our name in full: Young Lives vs Cancer and write it with only the Y, L and C capitalised. But don’t capitalise ‘vs’.

‘Young Lives vs Cancer’ should be not be abbreviated – it’s not “Young Lives” for short, nor “YLvC”

Related Posts

New questionnaire asks children with cancer what would make their lives easier

Wednesday 15 September 2021

Young Enfield cancer survivor stars in national charity’s campaign for Childhood Cancer Awareness Month

Wednesday 1 September 2021

Sumayyah, 4 from Enfield, stars in Young Lives vs Cancer's Childhood Cancer Awareness Month campaign