Canadian cancer survivors connect and share stories of hope

ST. JOHN'S, Dec. 2, 2013 /CNW/ - Young Adult Cancer Canada (YACC) brought approximately 200 cancer survivors together in a new and exciting way this past weekend. The Big Cancer Hook-up created a nationwide networking opportunity for young people who are dealing with cancer diagnoses.

On November 30, three cancer survivors participated in a panel discussion at Ryerson University in Toronto. These survivors spoke about the stages they have dealt with from diagnosis to life after treatment.

"I was depressed, suicidal and isolated when I was diagnosed. YACC connected me with others who deal with the same challenges. Not only did YACC change my life, YACC saved my life," said Lynsey Frangakis, one of the panelists. "It was amazing to be able to speak on the Big Cancer Hook-up panel to reach out to other young adults with cancer who are in—or have been in—situations similar to my own."

Thanks to modern technology, those who couldn't attend were able to join in via the web or by visiting one of the six satellite locations in major cities around the country.

"We bring cancer survivors together and help create a space where they learn and feel inspired," said Geoff Eaton, executive director, YACC. "The Big Cancer Hook-up offered this on a national scale; people from all over the country could join in and celebrate this peer support. YACC is growing and we are committed to ensuring our networks of support are accessible to all young adults."

More about the three panelists who spoke at the Big Cancer Hook-up:

Jamie Carswell: Diagnosed with stage three invasive breast cancer in 2008 with a recurrence in 2013. Jamie has an eight-month-old son and is on parental leave from her job as an RCMP officer. She still faces eight months of chemotherapy.

Peter Laneas: Diagnosed with testicular cancer in 2002. Peter is no longer in treatment, but has grown so much since his diagnosis.

Lynsey Frangakis: Diagnosed with incurable brain cancer in 2011. Currently enjoying a break in her treatment, she was recently married and has just returned to work.

"At YACC, we want to help young adults build their support team so daunting diagnoses seem much more manageable and the strength to fight the disease is that much more powerful," said Eaton.

SOURCE Young Adult Cancer Canada

For further information:

Media contact:
Geoff Eaton, executive director, YACC, geoff@youngadultcancer.ca, (709) 579-7327