CCI and SIOPE: Joining Our Forces

cci3The collaboration between SIOPE and the European Regional Committee of Childhood Cancer International (CCI) is stronger than ever. From this collaboration – officialised via a Memorandum of Understanding last year – many wonderful things arose, such as the SIOPE Strategic Plan, THE document which will indicate the priorities for the years to come to finally beat childhood cancer. At the recent SIOP Congress 2016, SIOPE and CCI partnered again during the session on “European Cross-Sectoral Initiatives”, explaining how parents and patients are a key partner in several EU projects: from ENCCA, which structured research in this field at the European level, to ExPO-r-Net, which is building the future European Reference Network for paediatric cancer patients, to PanCareSurFup, a wide pan-European study on the side effects which survivors can experience on the long-term. CCI representatives then illustrated all the important awareness-raising initiatives led by them and their members in Europe. cciOne of those is the recent information campaign on retinoblastoma. Among the rare paediatric cancers, there are certain types of cancers which are even rarer. Retinoblastoma is one of these very rare diseases, and there are collaborative study groups such as the European Retinoblastoma group (EURBG) that are dedicating all their efforts to discover more on its functioning and finding better cures. As it is crucial to make the general public aware of the possible symptoms (e.g. when a red sign in the pupil is noticed by a child’s parents) in order to ensure early diagnosis, a Europe-wide retinoblastoma campaign was launched via social media by various CCI member associations on October 16th 2016 . As the largest umbrella organization of childhood cancer grassroots and national parent organizations, last year CCI also launched a very successful awareness raising campaign at the international level. The “Child4Child” campaign reached a very high number of people from all around the world and – thanks to the participation of more than 900,000 children from all over the world – it resulted in the moving song We Are One, a song of hope and support for all those children and adolescents that are still fighting their battle against the disease. You too can still support this campaign: listen to the song on YouTube, spread the news and be part of it: together we are stronger! cci