Youth Cancer Trust (YCT) -  Thank you to...Kids for Life

Kids for Life donates £550 to Youth Cancer Trust towards our peer support holidays project.

The Bournemouth based charity provides teenagers and young adults with cancer an activity holiday
at the Trust’s house, which is a converted hotel situated 2 minutes from Alum Chine beach. The Trust accommodates 8 young people, Monday to Friday, all year round.

The young people choose as a group which activities they would like to take part in, which may include horse riding, water sports, go karting, dry slope skiing, yoga, cookery classes, mindfulness walks, foraging and much more. We also have access to swimming and spa facilities at the hotel next door and have gaming equipment, an art shed, pool table and karaoke on site.

As well as enjoying a fun and relaxing break, our guests also have the opportunity to build friendships and support from other young people going through a similar experience.

The Youth Cancer Trust project provides a safe environment where young cancer patients can be with one another. It has been recently documented that to promote wellbeing and positivity, young people with cancer need to be with other young people who have cancer, reducing the sense of isolation they feel.

Taking part in group activities helps to promote well being and improves confidence and self esteem.

Youth Cancer Trust: aims are to:
Improve confidence
Reduce isolation
Increase independence
Provide a sense of normality
Promote peer to peer support

The young people can return each year if they want to, enabling them to build long-term friendships
with peers who understand. From research it was found that being able to return has a positive outcome on the state of mind of the young person helping them to deal more positively with their

“YCT has enabled me to regain much of the confidence lost during my 5 year battle against cancer,
which for most of the duration I was in complete isolation and now find relationship building and
being social a rather sensitive subject. For me the charity has not only allowed me to rebuild the loss
of confidence but has enabled me to do so in a safe and homely environment with like minded peers-
that has a support group effect. Not only that, it presents new and exciting challenges which
enhances the entire experience. Only today after writing this, I have been horse riding – which is
something as a kid I would never have dared to do, even if my mum dressed me up as the milky bar
kid when I was 8. I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone that has enabled the YCT to
continue and make everything possible.”

“I was diagnosed with Non-Hodgkins T-Cell Lymphoma - a cancer of the blood. I underwent two years
of intense chemotherapy and finally managed to beat this dreadful disease. My journey to recovery
was hard, but the psychological effects were harder. Although I had a very supportive family and
great friends, I always felt alone, different to everyone else. Many weeks I spent living in isolation, as my immunity was so low that even a cold, or the flu would have been fatal. I looked different, I had
no hair, my face was swollen because of the treatment I was having, I looked really sick. I couldn’t do
the things my friends were doing, and felt as though I missed out on precious years of my childhood.
However, my battle against cancer was a fight made easier by the Youth Cancer Trust. I was given an
opportunity to escape reality and enjoy a week at Tracy Ann House in Bournemouth. The charity
provided me, and other patients like me, a holiday full of fun activities and a chance to be around
others that were also in the same position. Whilst there, my feelings of isolation were gone and I no
longer felt abnormal. I also met one of my closest friends during my stay, and have created some of
the best memories ever. To be around others that understand you and have shared your experiences,
is something which made my treatment almost bearable”

Thank you Letter

Dear Kids for Life,

I am writing on behalf of the Youth Cancer Trust to thank you very much for your kind donation of £550.00 which will fund a peer support activity holiday for a child of 14 who has been diagnosed with cancer. The grant will pay for the transportation to and from their home, all activities, accommodation and food and refreshments.

We are a small national charity that serves approximately 250 young cancer patients every year. When I say small, I mean our staff levels are small which enables us to use as much of your donation as possible to benefit the young people we support. Therefore your donation really does make a difference.

The Youth Cancer Trust provides free therapeutic activity holidays for teenagers and young adults, aged 14 to 30, with cancer from the UK and Ireland. The residential breaks are designed to provide a safe space for young people with cancer to be with others of a similar age going through a similar experience, thus reducing the sense of loneliness that often accompanies a cancer diagnosis during their formative years. The activities are designed to help rebuild confidence and boost self esteem and include horse riding, sailing and water sports.

“The Youth Cancer Trust gives amazing support, love and dedication to hundreds of young adults affected by Cancer, without them I truly don’t think I would have become the person I am today. They have given me back my confidence and made me realise that I can live a normal life, have fun and have the most amazing experiences like other young people who haven’t had cancer” Kirsty

Thank you for supporting young people with cancer like Kirsty, your donation really does make a difference.

Kind regards,
Brenda Clark