YACC Web: Chats provide a way for young adults affected by cancer to connect in an easy, safe, and supportive environment. These chats are peer-led themed virtual conversations offered over Zoom by a team of YACC leaders.
We are currently offering many live chats every week for young adults aged 18-39 (ish) years old. Registration remains open and new spaces are made available every week.
General chats are held multiple times a week for any young adults diagnosed with cancer. Each chat is themed to offer a variety of opportunities to connect within the young adult cancer experience.
Friday’s chat, Out With Cancer, provides a safe space for 2SLGBTQIA+ people to connect with others diagnosed with cancer in a private, affirming, empowering online space.
Monthly chats, Gen X, provides a space for YACCers who are 40(ish)+ to connect with others within this age group in a powerful, understanding way.
What you can expect: Respect, honesty, insights, and confidentiality.
“When I first learned of these YACC virtual chats, I was an emotional disaster. I was just finishing up my last treatment and I couldn’t even say my diagnosis out loud without crying. These weekly virtual chats have given me the strength and confidence I have been seeking. There is something about connecting with fellow cancer survivors that is invigorating — strength in numbers, I guess. After all they have done for me, I cannot even imagine not attending anymore.”
Ainsley (she/her) is sensitive and resilient. At the age of 29, she was diagnosed with a brain tumour in an area of the brain controlling essential life functions like breathing and heart rate. Currently in her mid to late 30s, she has finished treatment and is focused on living with integrity. She has participated in YACC Web: Chats since their inception, and has attended Localife events in Toronto and Ottawa. As a chat leader, she is deeply passionate about creating opportunities for young adult cancer survivors to feel a sense of belonging within the YACC community. She believes YACC is the bridge out of isolation for young adult cancer survivors.
Blair (he/him) is a thriver, relaxed, and loves to laugh. He was diagnosed with a blood cancer called Myleodysplastic Syndrome (MDS) in July 2016. He underwent a round of suppression chemotherapy and a bone marrow transplant from an unrelated donor. In October 2017, he found out his cancer had relapsed. Since then he receives chemo every six weeks and does everything he can to live life to the fullest in between! He first connected with YACC in 2018 through Localife Calgary. He feels his life changed that night because he was able to meet so many people who got what he was going through and could support him like nobody else could. Since then he has participated in many Localife events, Retreat Yourself Ontario (2020), and two virtual Survivor Conferences. He also volunteers as a YACCtivist, virtual Survivor Conference social committee member,Localife Calgary leader, and YACC Web: Chats leader. Blair leads the web chats because it was in the same environment that he was able to grow and transition from a cancer survivor to thriver and hopes to help other people, too.
Gabrielle (she/her) is thoughtful, calm, and intuitive. She is a young adult cancer thriver. Having been diagnosed in 2015 with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma, she underwent chemotherapy and radiation at the age of 19 and was declared in remission in 2016. She connected with YACC in 2018 when she attended Retreat Yourself Ontario, at which her cancer experience shifted towards growth. Since, she has participated in and volunteered for most YACC programs: Retreat Yourself, Survivor Conference, YACCtivist, Localife, YACC Web: Chats, and YACC Web: Talks. The importance of connection in her own cancer experience is the main reason why she leads these chats weekly. (Read Gabrielle’s YACC profile)
Jay (he/him) is a cancer survivor who is laid back, supportive, known to push boundaries, and walks to the beat of his own drum. After being diagnosed with stage 3 colon cancer in November 2020, he underwent a successful bowel resection and is on the home stretch of 12 rounds of clean up chemotherapy. Shortly after his diagnosis, he made the decision that he needed to find a community of like-minded people. Since joining YACC in December 2020, Jay has taken part in numerous YACC Chats, Survivor Conference, Primetown, and more. He is grateful and excited for the opportunity to support his fellow peers. Jay has a wealth of knowledge and is a true advocate, and he hopes to share this passion and lived experiences with fellow YACC members and support and encourage them to take control of their cancer journey. (Read Jay’s YACC profile)
Krista (she/her) is ambitious, optimistic, and passionate. She is a cancer survivor! Krista was diagnosed with Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma on March 18, 2020, just eight months after giving birth to twin babies and 12 days shy of her 33rd birthday. She completed four cycles of chemotherapy and was given remission status on June 17, 2020. Finding YACC and connecting with other young adults with cancer was a life line for Krista. It was at this point that she knew she needed to give back and connect with other young adults with cancer the way YACC did with her when she was first diagnosed. (Read Krista’s YACC profile)
Mike (he/him) is friendly, compassionate, and introspective. As a young adult cancer survivor and thriver, he was diagnosed with Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML) at age 27 in 2018 and underwent chemotherapy and an allogeneic stem-cell transplant before reaching full remission in 2019. Getting connected to the young adult cancer community played an immensely positive role for Mike in his post-treatment recovery, allowing him to learn from the experiences of other survivors while providing opportunities to give and receive support. Since joining the YACC community in 2019, Mike has participated in many of its programs including Localife, Big Cancer Hook-up, Survivor Conference 2020: Virtual, YACC Web: Talks, and YACC Web: Chats. The importance of giving back and remaining connected is the main reason Mike hosts his bi-weekly Web Chats. (Read Mike’s YACC profile)
Sandra (she/her) is caring, open minded, and curious. She is a young adult cancer survivor, having been diagnosed in 2019 with cervical cancer at the age of 35. Sandra connected with YACC in 2020 when she participated in weekly YACC Chats and attended virtual conferences. Providing others with support as they navigate their own cancer journey and normalizing hard emotions are the main reasons why she leads these chats.
Peter (he/him) is transparent, authentic, and invested. He is a young adult survivor who has proudly made it to his 40s. Having been diagnosed in 2002 with testicular cancer and again for a second time in 2006, he’s undergone two orchiectomies, one RPLND surgery, chemotherapy, and has been in remission since 2006.
He connected with YACC in 2008 when he attended a retreat in Montreal and a later conference in Lake Louise, AB. Since, he has participated in and volunteered as one of the original Localife Toronto leaders and one of the first panelists for the original Big Cancer Hook-up. Peter has continuously advocated for cancer awareness in and outside of YACC and continues to do so. “Isolation is the number one issue facing young adult survivors. Helping eliminate that is my drive to lead these chats.”
Production of YACC Web: Chats has been made possible through collaboration and financial support from the Canadian Partnership Against Cancer Corporation and Health Canada.
The views expressed herein do not necessarily represent the views of
the Canadian Partnership Against Cancer Corporation or Health Canada.