skip to Main Content

Explaining cancer to young children

Explaining Cancer To Young Children

Jigsaw (South East) welcomes the publication of a new children’s picture book that helps explain brain tumours to young children 


A nurse at the Royal Surrey County Hospital has produced a children’s picture book to help parents, carers, or other family members who have a brain tumour explain their diagnoses and treatment to their children. See the video below.


Kerry Foster Mitchell, who is a neuro-oncology clinical nurse specialist, produced the children’s picture book to help parents who have a brain tumour explain their diagnosis and treatment to their children.


In partnership with Macmillan, Jigsaw (South East) supports children and young people who have a family member with a life-threatening illness (as well as those who have been bereaved). For this reason, author Kerry approached the charity and asked for some input about the book before it was published.


Nickey Price, Operations Manager at Jigsaw (South East) said:


“As a charity that works closely with families who have recently been confronted with a serious illness like cancer, we are often asked for advice about how to share the news with children and young people – how much information to give them. This book tackles a very difficult subject in a very child-friendly way. We will certainly be recommending it to some of the families we are supporting and a grateful to have been invited to provide feedback.”


Nurse Ted – A Children’s Guide to Brain Tumours tells the story of a little girl named Lilly, who learns her father has cancer. Lilly feels scared after discovering her father’s diagnosis, but in a child friendly story Nurse Ted explains everything from scans to radiotherapy and even losing his hair.

nurse ted cover

The book, which is aimed at primary school aged children, features pictures of the Royal Surrey hospital and has been illustrated by local artist and illustrator Ffion Jones.


Mrs Foster Mitchell, 37, initially aimed to produce the picture book for her own patients but feedback from health professionals, patients and families of patients has been so positive that she  is now delighted to be making the book more widely available.


“Children often feel quite scared and worried when their parent or grandparent is diagnosed with a brain tumour,” said the mother-of-two from Surbiton, Surrey. “It is hard to explain to them exactly what is going on and that is where Nurse Ted comes in. We have already started work on our children’s guide to cancer and are then planning a children’s guide to diabetes.”


Nurse Ted – A Children’s Guide to Brain Tumours will be available to buy on November 16.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Back To Top