News & Events

Knowing the signs of childhood cancer could save a life

A national children’s cancer charity is asking families and the medical community to be aware of the early signs of childhood cancer, as Childhood Cancer Awareness month comes to a close. Knowing the signs can save lives.

Childhood Cancer Foundation Ireland notes that each year, around 200 children (aged 0-16 years) are diagnosed with cancer in Ireland. A diagnosis of childhood cancer has a devastating impact on the entire family, stopping life in its tracks. Early diagnosis has a significant impact on the treatment options and prognosis for children.

According to Laura Cullinan, voluntary Director of Childhood Cancer Foundation Ireland, and parent of a childhood cancer survivor, parents should always trust their gut instinct when it comes to their children’s health.

“My daughter Isobel was 21 months old when I was concerned about weight loss and a swollen abdomen. I knew in my heart something wasn’t right. I am so grateful to our GP and paediatrician, whose quick actions resulted in an early diagnosis of a kidney tumour (Wilms) at stage 1. This tumour generally responds well to treatment. Unfortunately, Isobel relapsed with a tumour in her lung but we were lucky to have more treatment options available because of the initial early diagnosis and response. Isobel is now 8 years old, cancer free and doing well.”

Dr Michael Capra, Consultant Paediatric Oncologist at CHI at Crumlin, reiterates that awareness of the signs is key.

“Approximately one child per week will be diagnosed with leukaemia in Ireland, with the same number again diagnosed with a brain tumour. Nobody wants to think about childhood cancer but it’s vital that parents and GPs know the signs because treatment can be very effective, particularly with early intervention.”

“The signs and symptoms can look very innocuous on their own so we are looking for persistent or recurring signs. Please remember, if your child has some of these symptoms, it does not mean that they have cancer. But it’s important that they are seen by a doctor, who can rule out a more serious problem. More than likely, it will be something minor, but we want to catch those rare cases where it’s something serious as early as possible.”

Laura Cullinan “Every year for Childhood Cancer Awareness month we stand in solidarity with the families fighting childhood cancer and the survivors. We remember the children who have died too soon from cancer and we #LightItUpGold for them and their families, by lighting landmark buildings gold and wearing gold ribbons. This year, we hope that by highlighting the signs and symptoms of childhood cancer we improve the outlook for families receiving this terrifying diagnosis.”

Childhood Cancer Foundation Ireland are also asking people to light a candle at 8pm on Wednesday 30th September and take a moment to remember children and families affected by childhood cancer.

Photo Credit: Grace Kelly Childhood Cancer Trust

Have Your Say!

We are asking for contributions from parents and anybody concerned with childhood cancer to give Childhood and Adolescent Cancer a strong focus in the Consultation on the EU Beating Cancer Plan.

As members of CCI-Europe (Childhood Cancer International Europe) Childhood Cancer Foundation Ireland, CanCare4living and CanTeen Ireland together with medical professionals, other organisations and individuals are asked to encourage as many responses as possible to ensure that Childhood and Adolescent Cancers will be noticed by EU policy makers to ensure better awareness, access to innovative treatments, research, eradication of inequalities, care for survivors and financial supports. This is an important opportunity to have your voice heard at EU level

If you think you can help, please do the following before 11pm Irish time 7th May 2020.

1. Register on https://webgate.ec.europa.eu/cas/eim/external/register.cgi (confirmation email may take up to 24 hours-so you are encouraged to create an account well in time to allow completion of the questionnaire before the deadline.

2. Access the EU Cancer Public Consultation https://ec.europa.eu/…/i…/12154-Europe-s-Beating-Cancer-Plan

CCI-Europe, SIOPE, and PanCare, (the Organisations representing parents, survivors and the medical professionals working in the field of childhood cancer) have adopted a collaborative approach to the consultation and have developed a template of replies with agreed key messages, which you can use and add to if you wish.

The more completed questionnaires received, the more importance Childhood and Adolescent Cancer will receive in the EU Beating Cancer Plan.

Click HERE for a copy of the questionnaire.

The number of submissions matter – this is your chance to be heard – Together we can make a difference.

https://ccieurope.eu/about/

https://siope.eu/

https://www.pancare.eu/…/initiatives/12154-Europe-s-Beating…
https://ec.europa.eu/…/i…/12154-Europe-s-Beating-Cancer-Plan

Adam's Fun Run

This May Bank Holiday, join Adam Reddington from Fuerty, Co. Roscommon, on a 10k or 5k fun run to raise funds for two childhood cancer charities – Childhood Cancer Foundation Ireland and Aoibheann’s Pink Tie.  Adam, age 13, has himself experienced childhood cancer, having been diagnosed with a brain tumour at age five. Adam had surgery and proton therapy in Germany which was very successful for more than four years. Unfortunately, Adam’s cancer returned last year and is having a significant impact on his mobility.  However, Adam, who was very sporty and active before his relapse, wanted to do something positive in his community, as his mum Elaine explains.  “Adam is amazing. He decided he wanted to do a fundraiser and picked two charities that mean a lot to him and to our family. It’s given him a great focus and something to look forward to. Adam feels he’s doing something really positive for other people who might have similar challenges to him. We’re very proud of Adam for wanting to do it and it’s been great for our family as his three siblings Josh, Tom Óg and Alannah are supporting him all the way.”  Laura Cullinan, Director of Childhood Cancer Foundation Ireland said that Adam is a huge role model for anyone living with childhood cancer. “We are so proud of Adam, he’s an inspiration. Even though he is facing his own challenges, he is thinking of other children, adolescents and young adults who are newly diagnosed or going through treatment and he wants to help make their lives a little easier. He and his siblings are doing the childhood cancer community proud. Childhood Cancer Foundation Ireland funds the Beads of Courage Programme for our Gold Ribbon Heroes and their siblings and Play Services on St. John’s Day Ward.”  Mick Rochford, CEO Aoibheann’s Pink Tie said Adam is an inspiring young man. “Focusing on the needs of others is a selfless act and we are honoured to be one of the recipients of the funds raised by Adam and his Super Siblings. The funds raised will enable us to buy dry suits, pay for respite days, hotel accommodation at a local hotel when a child is in treatment, fuel vouchers, food vouchers and so much more. On behalf of all the Team and the families we support A BIG THANK YOU Adam and of course your Super Siblings Josh Tom Óg and Alannah.”  Adam’s Fun Run will start at Mulhern Park, Fuerty GAA Club on Monday 2nd May at 11am. Please come along and show your support if you can. Registration takes place on the day, with 5k and 10k routes available.  You can also make a donation online at https://www.idonate.ie/fundraiser/11431926_adam--s-fun-run.html.   For updates follow @adams-fun-run on Facebook.  
02 May 2022

Webinar: The transition to third level for young people affected by childhood cancer

Moving from second to third level can be daunting for any student and parent, and it is even more so for childhood cancer survivors or adolescents and young adults who are undergoing treatment. No young person affected by childhood cancer is left unmarked by their journey and the treatments needed to save their lives. Many of our adolescents and young adults are dealing with long term and late effects, which may be physical, emotional or cognitive. This webinar aims to provide information and advice on moving through the senior cycle and moving onto higher and further education. We will look at DARE (Disability Access Route to Education) and find out how it applies to young people affected by childhood cancer and how to apply. We will also find out more about supports available in college and how to access them. Guests: Our guests are Lucy Cronly, a parent of a childhood cancer survivor. Lucy has over 30 years’ experience working in social care. Her son underwent treatment for childhood cancer from the age of 11-14 and has just started college. Lucy will share her experiences and advice on DARE and other supports. Dr Declan Reilly, Disability Officer with Trinity College Dublin, has been working in Trinity College since 2005. He has particular responsibility for providing evidence based supports for students as they settle into Trinity and advance their skills of independent learning and self-determination. Who should attend: This webinar is open to parents and students at any stage of education, but may be particularly of interest to those in senior cycle. Anyone working alongside adolescents and young adults affected by childhood cancer is also welcome to attend. Register: Please register in advance to attend this webinar: https://zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_b1vmH5SWR9OlNw1W4AVsFw
24 Nov 2021

Gold Ribbon Conversations Podcast

We are delighted to bring you our Gold Ribbon Conversations podcast during Childhood Cancer Awareness month, exploring various aspects of childhood cancer with five guests. You’ll find Gold Ribbon Conversations 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, emotional, 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 [email protected] 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 [email protected], working with families and the medical team to ensure the best outcomes possible for children.
01 Sep 2021
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