YOUNG people with cancer from mid and south Essex can now access specialist care and support from a new Teenage Cancer Trust nurse, thanks to funding from leading global financial services firm Morgan Stanley. This is part of a two-year charity partnership which will see employees raise over £1 million for Teenage Cancer Trust.
Nurse Grace Kent, who is based at Southend Hospital, is now on hand to provide age-appropriate advice, care and extra emotional support for those aged 16-24 who are receiving cancer treatment at Southend and the other hospitals which are part of Mid and South Essex NHS Foundation Trust – Basildon and Broomfield.
Teenage Cancer Trust is the only UK charity dedicated to providing specialised nursing care and support for young people with cancer. Since the charity was established 30 years ago, it has funded 28 specialist units within NHS hospitals where young people are brought together to be treated by teenage cancer experts in a place designed for them.
Young people and teenagers from Essex can access the charity’s units at hospitals specialising in cancer treatment in London, but many will receive part, or all, of their treatment at their local hospital, where they are treated in exactly the same way as much older adults. This new role means Grace is able to provide much-needed additional support to teenagers and younger people with cancer who are going through some extremely difficult times.
Grace, Teenage Cancer Trust Teenage and Young Adults Clinical Nurse Specialist explained:
“My aim is to be there for every young person from the point of diagnosis to help and guide them through the shock of a cancer diagnosis, treatment, and the disruption it can cause to their lives.
“For example, I explain medical jargon and treatment plans in an age-appropriate way, accompany them to appointments with consultants for emotional support, and help co-ordinate appointments at multiple hospitals which can prove particularly challenging at a younger age.
“As well as providing care myself, I introduce them to other services and charities that can help them cope too.
“I love working with young people, they inspire me every day, and I’m so happy that we’re able to provide this new service to young people in the region.”
Morgan Stanley is raising over £1m for Teenage Cancer Trust, and alongside Grace’s post is helping to fund three other new Teenage Cancer Trust nurses who will work across London and the South East.
The money from the partnership will also pay for a brand-new specialist blood cancer ward at University College London (UCLH), where many young people from Kent are treated, and a chillout space and waiting area within UCLH’s new proton beam therapy centre.
As part of their fundraising efforts, Morgan Stanley colleagues recently took part in Walk With Us, a challenge that encouraged them to complete 15,000 steps or more in support of Teenage Cancer Trust nurses – which reflects the number of steps a nurse does in a shift. Over 400 colleagues got involved, completing over 4 million steps with friends and family to rise vial funds.
Piers Harris, Head of Fixed Income Capital Markets EMEA at Morgan Stanley and Trustee of the Morgan Stanley International Foundation commented:
“We are delighted that teenagers and young adults receiving cancer treatment in Essex will now have access to the expert care and support they deserve closer to home.”