Engaging Young People

How do you to reach out to young people, communicate in their language, involve them in your project, effectively help them and perhaps change their behaviour?

KOKO has helped key charities such as NSPCC and RSPCA to engage children and teens actively in their projects and to make a real difference. For example, we’re working with The Christie Hospital on a project to reach out and support teenage cancer survivors online.

A Holistic Approach

The Christie NHS Foundation Trust is Europe’s largest cancer research centre and has been researching for over 100 years. Their Young Oncology Unit (YOU) provides care for teenagers and young adults, up to 24 years of age, with cancer and related illnesses. It is just one of the UK’s Teenage Cancer Trust units, providing specialist care and facilities for this age group.

The YOU has an all-round approach to healthcare for young people. As well as expert doctors and nurses, they provide a Community Liaison Nurse to co-ordinate care when young people go home, an Activity Co-ordinator who runs events inside and outside the hospital. Each young person on the YOU is also assigned a social worker who offers advice and support throughout his/her involvement with the unit and afterwards as necessary, and there’s physio and occupation therapy staff to help get body and mind into shape.

Reaching Out Online

Now The Christie intends to strengthen and extend their supportive connection with Teen and Young Adult Cancer Survivors with an online community that brings survivors together and provides good quality educational support.

As a Barnardo’s-supported project, the Christie is able to take part in the Barnardo’s Community and they have set up a private group within the community for their young survivors.

KOKO trained the Christie staff and helped them set up their group, which gives the opportunity to create Polls and Surveys to learn about young people’s needs, announce Events and meetings and run discussions or consultations in private Forums. They can also upload useful educational materials to their Learning Zone and images, videos and slideshows to their Media Gallery.

Educational Content

For even greater flexibility The Christie has an MiniSite integrated into the community – a mini website with a Content Management System that allows staff to edit and add content.

KOKO developed the MiniSite and created slideshow content using The Christie’s expert’s knowhow, designed to engage young people and put over some of the important educational content that young cancer survivors need.

Now Christie’s staff can reach out and help young people, through the online community, anytime, any where and provide them with online expert and peer support, give useful advice and provide up to date educational materials.