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Outside of the cancer world: Recruitment for the Recover Study

A close-up selfie of Sarah smiling at the camera. Sarah is a white women in her early 40s. Sarah has long dark brown curly hair, an oval shaped face and wears cat eye-shaped glasses.By Sarah Manns, Recover Leadership Team member

Last weekend marked the fifth anniversary of my cancer diagnosis.

When I received my diagnosis, I was angry and terrified. I thought my cancer journey would last six months and everything would go back to how it was before. It lasted much longer than six months and was nothing like I thought it would be. It wasn’t over when the treatment ended, life wasn’t the same after, and I’d never felt more isolated in my life. It felt like the cancer care system wasn’t there for me and my regular daily activities weren’t compatible with cancer.

Reaching others who felt the same way

As we work to meet our goal of a 2,000 member cohort for the Recover Study, we are thinking about how we can make sure we reach the most people possible. We’ve started building the cohort by connecting with people we already have in our universe, reaching out to those connected to YACC and those who are linked into other cancer-based resources.

The Leadership Team has been able to make good progress towards our goal, but we know its important to reach out to new people — people who, like me, didn’t have contacts in the cancer world prior to finding Young Adult Cancer Canada (YACC) after my treatment had finished.

As we step outside of the cancer care universe, we’re looking to step into the places where young adults are, like workplaces and schools. By working with labour unions, post-secondary institutions, and community-based resources, we can make these new connections.

The Recover Study provides the opportunity for us to collect information about the impacts that cancer has on us as young adults and then share back to the places where young adult are. If there is a better understanding of the impacts of a cancer diagnosis on a young adult, then maybe we can make it easier to survive and thrive.

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