Little Stars FAQs
Here are answers to some of the frequently asked questions about our Little Stars Awards and sharing your story for publicity purposes.
- Is my child eligible to receive an award?
- Where can I find out about support for families of children with cancer?
- How does Cancer Research UK benefit from publicising my family's story?
- What does taking part in publicity involve?
- Will my number be given out to lots of journalists?
- Does getting involved in publicity mean that I will be featured in the media?
- Will I get to approve anything that is written about me or my child?
- What if there are sensitivities surrounding my child's story?
- Does my child have to take part in publicity to receive an award?
- Will I get paid for telling my story?
Cancer Research UK’s Little Star Awards are open to all children and teenagers under the age of 18. As long as they live in the UK, have been diagnosed with cancer in the past five years and have not received the award before.
Our support page has links and information for families. We have also worked with our Cancer Chat team to create a new topic area specifically for families of children with cancer. We hope this will provide a safe and friendly place for families to talk to one another and share information and support.
By highlighting the experience of families dealing with cancer, such as yours, we can communicate the impact cancer has on ordinary people. By sharing your personal experience we can show the importance of research and help make our work relevant and compelling to the widest possible audience.
Taking part in publicity means being identified by your name, town and age, possibly being photographed and/or recorded. You would also need to be willing to speak about your child's illness and treatment, and discuss your family generally. We recommend that you speak to other family members about this to ensure that everyone is comfortable with sharing your story.
No. We will only pass on your numbers to individual journalists with your consent. We work closely with journalists and do our best to ensure that they understand the sensitive nature of working with families affected by cancer.
We very much hope that it will, however this is something that we cannot guarantee. Sometimes families give interviews and these are not printed or broadcast. This does not mean that you are not special, interesting or that you have not given a good interview; it might be that another major event has happened at the same time. For this reason we are always conscious not to disappoint any of our Little Stars and would ask that families bear this in mind too.
We are keen to make sure that anything we write about you is factually correct and is approved by you. We then provide this information to journalists as background about you and your story; however we have no control over what they write. Some journalists will phone you up to read through their ‘copy’, especially if you insist on this as a condition of giving an interview. However, some media organisations are unable to commit to a copy read-through, largely due to very tight deadlines.
If there are any sensitive issues surrounding your family situation, it does not mean that you cannot help with publicity. If you can let us know what your concerns are, we can try to address them and steer any potential focus away from them.
No, you can opt-out of taking part in publicity and still receive an Award. But if families are comfortable sharing their experience Cancer Research UK are incredibly grateful for this support. Because it can help raise awareness of children’s cancer and highlight the importance of research to help improve children’s lives in the future.
It is unusual for newspaper or broadcast journalists to pay families for telling their story - however some magazines may offer payment. If you are offered money for sharing your story, this is an agreement between you and the media title and not something that we get involved with.
Question about cancer? Contact our information nurse team