Job opportunity

Poverty and Cancer: Community based action-research project

Macmillan Cancer Support

Local award winning child poverty charity Family Gateway (formerly Tyne Gateway Trust) has teamed up with national charity Macmillan Cancer Support to launch a new community-based project to support families in poverty who are also dealing with cancer.

We are recruiting for a part-time Research and Operations manager to oversee the project and lead a small team of Community Entrepreneurs. The salary for the role is £40k per annum pro-rata and we are recruiting for a 0.6fte role.

We are seeking an enterprising and self-motivated manager with an excellent track record in project management, research and evaluation, a good knowledge of the health sector, in particular the cancer networks, and an interest in reducing family and child poverty.

You will have at least 5 years’ management experience in health, research, community development or family support with a solid and evidenced knowledge of the policies and practices underpinning early intervention and prevention in health and a passion for improving life chances for children. You will also have strong leadership and stakeholder management skills and evidenced experience of leading an action research project and producing meaningful and evidence-based evaluation to inform future project development and potentially national or regional policy. You will also have experience in leading diverse teams towards challenging targets in an ever-moving environment.

We are looking for an individual with a creative mind-set, a strong work ethic, a sense of humour and an appetite to encourage, develop and manage new enterprising projects in this area of work. You will be required to work closely with the Macmillan partners and the Family Gateway Strategic Director to drive this project forward and secure new and longer term funding and growth opportunities.

To receive a job description and person specification please contact our office at

If you would like an informal discussion about this role please contact Pauline Wonders by 26th May 2017 via to arrange a call.

More information about the project

The project will provide intensive and practical support to the whole family with the ultimate aim being that children are not adversely impacted by the prevalence of cancer in the family. Local parents who themselves have experienced cancer in the family and who live in the same disadvantaged communities as those suffering, will work as Macmillan Community Entrepreneurs in line with the charity’s evidence-based Barefoot Professional model.

As well as supporting families to ensure appointments are kept and medication is managed, the Community Entrepreneurs will help deal with the emotional issues that ripple through the whole family when a child, parent, sibling, grandparent or other significant family member is diagnosed. This support will help parents, grandparents and the wider family build resilience and ensure that children’s mental and physical health is not effected and that their education and social development does not suffer.

The action research project will be fully evaluated to inform future developments and to highlight the link between poverty and cancer in terms of diagnosis, survival and family resilience.

Pauline Wonders, Chief Executive of Family Gateway says ‘this is a very important project for us and we are delighted to be working with Macmillan on the very important issue of poverty and cancer. We know that survival rates from cancer in our local communities are lower than the national average and that many children in our communities suffer as a result of the family not having the support networks to help them cope and plan for the future, so we are really keen to improve outcomes for these children and to evaluate the project to inform future developments.

Tina Thompson, Partnership Manager for Macmillan Cancer Support says ‘this project is something that Macmillan fully supports. The links between poverty and cancer have been proven, and Macmillan are excited to be working in partnership with Family Gateway to deliver direct support to families affected by cancer. This project will gather information and intelligence to inform future service provision both locally and nationally, improving the outcomes for children who are affected by cancer diagnosis.’

The project will begin in September 2017 across North Tyneside, South Tyneside and some parts of Northumberland and will run initially for 2 years.

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