Clifton Hospital’s Skin Cancer Care Coordinator, Michelle Forsyth, is getting more and more schools and nurseries on board with her important message – Protect your skin and be sun safe.
For the last 12 months, Michelle, funded by MacMillan Cancer Support, has been visiting schools, nurseries and outside workplaces to present a skin cancer awareness talk and help teams get accredited as being Sun Safe, a scheme which is run by the Skcin – the Karen Clifford Skin Cancer Charity.
Michelle is an ambassador for Skcin, which raises awareness through education promoting prevention and early detection of skin cancer.
So far in the Fylde, there are five accredited organisations that work with children, with more currently working through the necessary qualifications.
The five will be awarded with a special sun cream board which enables people to be able to apply accredited sun cream as required while they are outside.
These special boards were part funded by a special fundraising day that Michelle organised in May. She will be presenting the boards to the new accredited organisations at a second fundraiser to be held in July.
Michelle said: “This scheme is completely free to any relevant business or organisation.
“I can come to assemblies, sports days or other events where I can spread the word and raise awareness. I even have a special mascot called George that can come with me.
“I would urge any school, nursery, afterschool club etc to consider getting involved in this free scheme. Many schools can’t reapply sun cream to children and in hot weather this can lead to dangerous sunburn.
“By getting accredited and getting a special board, teachers and carers only need to prompt the children to apply the cream themselves from the dispenser. It really is an enormous help in the war again skin damage that can lead to skin cancer.’’
Marie Tudor, Business Development Manager for Skcin, said:“Skcin are delighted that schools on the Fylde wish to support our Sun Safe Accreditation.
“The scheme goes from strength to strength every year with increased registrations from schools and nurseries and workplaces. Eighty five per cent of skin cancers are caused by over exposure to UV, so 85% of cases are preventable.
“Education of sun awareness is key. By schools adopting the scheme we are driving a cultural change with the next generation and also mitigating future healthcare costs and ultimately saving lives.
“Michelle has been pivotal in her role in recommending the schemes and encouraging registrations from the area.
“Skcin are delighted to be able to provide the funds raised by Michelle for the purchase of sun boards and dispensers for local nurseries. Michelle is true Ambassador in every sense of the word.”
If you think Michelle could help you, you can email her at Michelle.Forsyth@bfwhospitals.nhs.uk.