Posted on Wednesday 18 January 2023

in News, Press releases

Building a better future for children and young people diagnosed with cancer – ground-breaking research commissioned

Leading cancer charities Young Lives vs Cancer, the Children’s Cancer and Leukaemia Group (CCLG), the Ellen MacArthur Cancer Trust, and Teenage Cancer Trust are working in partnership to build a new evidence base looking at the psychosocial needs of young cancer patients and how the current system supports them. The research will also identify gaps and what needs to happen in order to build a better future for children and young people diagnosed with cancer.

Dartington Service Design Lab, a charity with a view to improving children’s outcomes through research, systems thinking and co-design approaches, has been commissioned as the research partner. They will undertake experience-led research, which will be co-designed by young people, parents of children with cancer and key stakeholders, with Edge Hill University.  The aim of the research is to improve policies and practice around cancer support, it also hopes to model equitable research practices when working with young people, particularly those with lived experience of cancer.

Rachel Kirby-Rider, Chief Executive at Young Lives vs Cancer said: “It’s hugely important that charities really understand the needs of those they support. At the very heart of Young Lives vs Cancer’s next strategy will be children and young people with cancer and what they need, so it’s vital we take a step back, look at the system around them, and identify gaps and what needs to happen to build a better future for them.

“It’s really exciting that together with CCLG, the Ellen MacArthur Cancer Trust, and Teenage Cancer Trust, we’re going to be working with Dartington Service Design Lab on this ground-breaking research. Their enthusiasm to support the children and young people’s cancer sector to build a cohesive system around young cancer patients shines through. I think this research will benefit the whole sector and would really welcome their support and input going forwards.”

Prof. Tim Hobbs – Chief Executive at Dartington Service Design Lab said: “This is a hugely exciting and innovative programme of applied research and design. What is particularly exciting is that four of the largest and most impactful children’s cancer charities are collaborating and grounding their future strategic direction by working together to better understand the needs of children and families. This approach also brings together the voices of children, young people and families, new evidence and systems thinking, which will help inform plans about the best roles each organisation can play in the sector- alone and together – to help improve outcomes for those they serve. We at Dartington Service Design Lab are delighted to be working with such forward-thinking partners and inspiring young people.”

Research will be taking place throughout the first half of 2023 with initial findings expected in the autumn. Young Lives vs Cancer, Children’s Cancer and Leukaemia Group (CCLG), the Ellen MacArthur Cancer Trust, and Teenage Cancer Trust will be using the research findings to shape their future strategic thinking.

For more information about Young Lives vs Cancer, or this research, please contact Alison Millar, Senior Media and Communications Officer at Young Lives vs Cancer (alison.millar@younglivesvscancer.org.uk or 07775 723 755)

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