About You Can
You Can’s mission is to ensure that no young person faces their journey alone.
All too often, we hear the stories of young people being treated alongside the elderly, far away from support of their families and friends. Beyond this, there is the added burden of study, work, friends and life. You see, cancer isn’t just the chemotherapy, the radiation, the surgery, the sickness.For many, the cancer journey beyond treatment can be just as overwhelming.
Every year, nearly 1000 young people aged 15-25 years old in Australia are diagnosed with cancer. From all corners of Australia, these young people put their lives, their schooling, their university studies, their jobs, their dreams, on hold and receive treatment from one of the main Adolescent & Young Adult (AYA) Youth Cancer Service centres – located in major cities build youth cancer centres around Australia to improve services tailored for this age group, and provide a place where they can find others their age and the support they need.
Once treatment stops however, the cancer journey often is just starting. You Can saw the need for a place where young people affected by cancer could reach out for peer support, or get peer support, no matter where they were or what stage they were at in their journey. A place where they could go when they can’t talk to their parents, when their mates don’t get it, a place where they won’t have to censor their journey. A virtual You Can Centre where all the discussions were by young people, for young people.
The concept for such a community platform was found by partnering with IHadCancer.com – a three time Webby awarded cancer community website that was built from the ground up, by one inspirational woman, who didn’t want to face her cancer journey alone.
You Can and IHadCancer have collaborated to create a tailored platform for young people in Australia. Continue reading to hear more about the inspirational story behind IHadCancer.com.
It all began with three words. "You have cancer."
When Mailet Lopez was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2008 at the age of 33, she had great support from family and friends, but still found that they couldn't fully understand what she was going through. She spent a lot of time searching online, but couldn't find a resource that easily connected her to someone who could answer all of her questions.
It was only by chance that Mailet found her cancer hero - a breast cancer survivor who was the same age as her and happened to be in the same waiting room. She was able to answer many of the questions that Mailet had and shared valuable information on treatment options. Most importantly, she really understood, first-hand, what Mailet was going through.
It was this encounter that made Mailet realize that when it's a matter of life and death, nothing should be left up to chance. Mailet decided that she wanted to help the next person who was affected and change the way people deal with cancer. She took advantage of her unique position as the co-founder of an award-winning digital agency and, along with founder Anthony Del Monte, leveraged the talent and experience of their team at Squeaky Wheel Media to build IHadCancer.com.
Our mission is to empower anyone who has been affected by cancer. We provide our members with the ability to connect and share personal experiences about cancer with others who really understand. Our community is 100% user-generated and engages all who are involved in an individual’s cancer fight: the survivors, fighters, supporters and caregivers.