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First Welsh school takes part in bowel cancer awareness project

26 Feb 2024 3 minute read
Pupils at Ysgol Pen Rhos

A primary school in Carmarthenshire has become the first in Wales to participate in an awareness-raising bowel cancer project.

Bowel cancer is the fourth most common cancer and the second biggest cancer killer in Wales.

Every year more than 2,200 people across Wales are diagnosed with the disease and over 900 people die.

Year 6 pupils at Ysgol Pen Rhos, Llanelli, took part in the event which is part of a collaboration between Hywel Dda University Health Board (UHB), Public Health Wales and the Moondance Cancer Initiative.

Moondance Cancer aims to significantly improve cancer survival in Wales by not only working in clinical setting but also in our communities.

Behaviour change

Their schools project hopes to influence long-term behaviour change within younger generations by educating them about cancer, cancer treatment, and the connection to healthy behaviours.

Ysgol Pen Rhos pupils were joined by Colorectal Consultant, Mr Pawan Dhruva Rao, with Dr Danielle Cunningham and Dr Johnsingh Sitther, together with Peyton Jones from Bowel Screening Wales and Mrs Johnson, a patient experience of bowel cancer.

Mr Dhruva Rao, Colorectal Consultant at Hywel Dda UHB, said: “I’ve loved spending time with the pupils today. Talking about bowels and the importance of bowel screening can’t be underestimated. What the children have learned will save lives. I couldn’t be prouder of them and how they engaged with the session and the project. “

Outstanding opportunity

Dr Joe Cudd, Head Teacher, Ysgol Pen Rhos, added: “We jumped at the opportunity to work with the Moondance Cancer Initiative, Public Health Wales, Hywel Dda University Health Board and Mrs Johnson.

“The Curriculum for Wales provides us with opportunity for authentic and relevant learning experiences. This was an outstanding opportunity for the pupils to experience the expertise of the health board in their classroom. We hope this will support the uptake of the bowel screening in our community too.”

Peyton Jones, Quality and Service Improvement Manager, Bowel Screening Wales, added: “Bowel cancer is treatable and curable, especially if it is diagnosed early. Nearly everyone survives bowel cancer if diagnosed at the earliest stage.

“That is why we’re especially excited by the session with the Year 6 pupils from Ysgol Pen Rhos, as they now have important knowledge that will help them look out for their family and loved ones, and themselves too.”

You can find out more about bowel cancer screening across Wales here.

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Another Richard
Another Richard
1 month ago

This seems a very odd use of the limited resources available for health education. I say this as one who has undergone two colonoscopies as part of a screening programme.

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