Arm students with information

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Teenage Cancer Awareness Week is running from October 1 to 7, and we’re encouraging all secondary school teachers across the country to get involved and speak to young people about cancer. We’d also love to see parents encouraging their son or daughter’s secondary schools to take part.

Six young people are diagnosed with cancer every day, that’s around 2,500 a year. As cancer in young people is rare, the symptoms can be easily missed, whilst young people often put off going to the doctors because they are scared, embarrassed or lack confidence.

We owe it to the six young people diagnosed every day to arm secondary school pupils with basic information about cancer.

This includes the most common signs of cancer in 13 to 24 year olds, which are persistent and unexplained: pain; a lump, bump or swelling; extreme tiredness; significant weight loss; changes in a mole.

This isn’t about scaring young people. We want to empower them to speak up if they are worried. Most of the time the problem will be something else, but it’s important young people have the confidence to talk about it, just in case.

Please get involved and encourage your local secondary school to raise awareness of the signs and symptoms of cancer in young people between October 1 and 7.

Free Teenage Cancer Awareness Week leaflets, posters and teaching packs can be downloaded from www.teenagecancertrust.org.

Teachers can contact our education team on 020 7612 0398 or education@teenagecancertrust.org.

SIMON DAVIES

Chief executive, Teenage Cancer Trust, 93 Newman Street, London W1T 3EZ