Author: Kim Madden and Dr Rachel Iredale, University of South Wales

Day Two – Wednesday 26th June

Strand – Health & Well Being

Session Four: 9.30am – 11am

This presentation provides an overview of a qualitative study involving a team from the University of South Wales working with a group of 12 and 13 year olds from Stanwell School in Penarth.  The aim of this project was to demonstrate whether it is feasible, and whether it is acceptable, to engage children with family history as it relates to cancer, so they increase their cancer genetics literacy over time, and become more aware of general health issues that relate to cancer. 

The objectives were to show that children can: understand the role that family history plays in health and disease; learn about how family history influences cancer; develop cancer genetics literacy; become aware of health behaviours that are likely to reduce cancer risk, and act as disseminators of cancer genetics information to their peers. 

Twenty children participated in three group days involving learning about genetics and cancer.  Considerable attention was paid to stories, games and creative activities in terms of learning, and encouraging self-reflection and self-understanding.  Survey data were collected via electronic voting and participants produced a rap to convey to other children their age key facts relating to cancer and genetics.

This presentation focuses on the innovative methods employed within the study and presents examples of tools developed to engage children in genetics learning and research activity.  Results from the study are presented, highlighting key findings as they relate to research activity with children, and considers the implications for health promotion activity within the communities of South Wales.

Please click here to download presentation.