•September is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month
•Childhood Cancer Foundation Ireland launch – Gold Ribbon Conversations
• Five episodes exploring various aspects of childhood cancer
• Guests share their experiences of childhood cancer, survivorship, bereavement, and medical and emotional expertise
A podcast exploring various aspects of childhood cancer has been released by national charity Childhood Cancer Foundation Ireland, to support families in time for Childhood Cancer Awareness month this September.
Produced and hosted by Sinead O’Moore from the No1 parenting podcast, “everymum the podcast”, Gold Ribbon Conversations shines a light on the experiences of families during diagnosis, treatment, survivorship and bereavement, as well as hearing from medical and emotional experts in the field.
A diagnosis of childhood cancer has a devastating impact on the entire family. It brings fear, anxiety, sadness, pain and isolation. Gold Ribbon Conversations aims to break through the isolation by sharing important conversations that explore the lows and highs of childhood cancer, ultimately finding the light, hope, friendships and community that also exist here.
Sinead O’Moore, Podcast Host:
“It has been my privilege to create and share these conversations on behalf of Childhood Cancer Foundation Ireland. Six children, adolescents and young adults are diagnosed with childhood cancer every week in Ireland. That’s six families thrown into this new world, completely unprepared.
Through the work that I have done with everymum.ie and as a mother of two young girls, I was compelled to use what I know about the power of podcasts with the ambition to connect, support and shine a light on the supports available for families fighting childhood cancer.
All five guests have a unique experience to tell, each one can help to create awareness and understanding of the world of childhood cancer while raising money for the supports they need. I’m deeply honoured to be involved and grateful to our guests for their strength, openness and commitment.”
Laura Cullinan, Voluntary Director of Childhood Cancer Foundation Ireland:
“We at Childhood Cancer Foundation Ireland are very proud of all of the Gold Ribbon Conversations and very grateful to the guests who trusted us with their stories. As a parent of a childhood cancer survivor myself, I know what a lonely road this can be. Peer support and opportunities to communicate are vitally important and Childhood Cancer Awareness month is the perfect time for us to share these conversations.”
Every year, just over 320 children, adolescents and young adults (aged 0-24 years)  are diagnosed with cancer in Ireland. Treatments are harsh and can cause life-long side effects. It is estimated that there are over 6,000 adult survivors of childhood cancer living in Ireland and thankfully, due to improved treatments, this number is growing.
Gold Ribbon Conversations is available wherever you listen to podcasts.
Episode 1: Nikki Bradley
Nikki was diagnosed with a rare bone cancer at the age of 16. Now as an adult she shares the impact of this adolescent diagnosis and treatment on her mental, emotonal, physical and fertility health. Now as a motivational speaker Nikki has completed a number of physical challenges and champions the power of mindset.
Episode 2: Sinead Wood
Sinead’s son Cillian was diagnosed with lymphoma at the age of seven and has fought cancer for 3 years. He has just finished treatment and has a bright future ahead. But as we learn in this episode as treatment ends, suppressed emotions can begin to come to the surface.
Episode 3: Cathy Bermingham
Cathy’s son Max sadly passed away in 2019 at the age of eight, having been diagnosed with neuroblastoma when he was two. Cathay has been supported in her grief through connecting with other parents who understand loss and by celebrating the life of her little boy. Through this episode she hopes to now support other parents in their grief.
Episode 4: Rebecca Walsh
Rebecca is a Play Specialist in CHI@Crumlin and works with children and families through the medium of play to help them understand their diagnosis and treatment.
Treatment of childhood cancer is more than just physical, children heal, grow, process and develop through the power of play.
Episode 5: Dr Sarah Curry
Sarah is a paediatric oncologist in CHI@Crumlin, working with families and the medical team to ensure the best outcomes possible for children.
• Gold Ribbon Conversations is powered by Acast, the largest global podcast company and available across all podcast platforms.
• Childhood Cancer Foundation is a charity founded by and led by parents of children with cancer. It was established in 2013.
• The charity helps to ease the burden of diagnosis and treatment on children and their families by raising funds to provide practical and emotional supports.
• They also advocate for better supports and services for families, as well as better treatments and outcomes for children.
• Childhood cancer encompasses children, adolescents and young adults aged 0 – 24 years in Ireland.
• An average of 328 children, adolescents and young adults were diagnosed with childhood cancer per annum from 2015 – 2017, according to the National Cancer Registry Ireland.
• The most common types of childhood cancers include cancers of the blood (leukaemia and lymphoma), brain tumours and solid tumours, such as neuroblastoma and Wilms tumour.
 National Cancer Registry Ireland https://www.ncri.ie/