Telling your child you have cancer – UCLH Cancer Collaborative and Fruit Fly Collective launch anima

UCLH Cancer Collaborative has teamed up with the Fruit Fly Collective to launch a short animated film to advise parents with cancer on how to talk to their children about their diagnosis.

It is thought to be the first animated film of its kind and guides parents through discussing their cancer diagnosis with children of different ages, should they wish to.

Explaining a cancer diagnosis to their child is one of the hardest things a parent can do. But with the right support, children are very good at coping and talking to each other as a family can really help children at this difficult time.

The animation uses a cartoon family to give practical tips on telling children you have cancer. Evidence shows that adults respond positively to messages that may be frightening, sensitive or confusing when the information behind the messages is created in a comic-book like format. The animation has also been made into a comic-book for parents, and flyers informing people about the film will be distributed throughout the NHS in the London Cancer area.

Dr Mark Barrington, chair of the London Cancer Psychosocial Expert Reference Group and a consultant clinical psychologist, said:

“It is so important that people diagnosed with cancer receive the right psychological, as well as medical, support. For parents, this can be an especially difficult time and sometimes people are unsure whether or not to tell their children about their diagnosis at all. We were delighted to work with the Fruit Fly Collective to produce the first film of its kind offering clear, practical advice

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