“Top Tips From The Experts”

Self-isolation is one of the key parts and stages of most cancer patients’ treatment, when their immune system becomes compromised. With most of the world now under sudden lockdown and forced to self-isolate, YCE’s own community of young cancer survivors has rallied together to share their own expert tips on how to best deal with self-isolation during this time, especially from a mental health perspective. 

Emi was born and raised near Suceava, Romania, and currently lives in Cluj-Napoca, a city in the region of Transylvania. He’s a cancer survivor and passionate patient advocate who was diagnosed 10 years ago with testicular cancer. Following his treatment he has been doing regular check-ups and staying positive, something which is fuelled by his work as a patient advocate and fundraiser.

He has been involved with Youth Cancer Europe since its inception in 2015, while being part of a community of young cancer patients and survivors in Romania and seeing the need for cancer advocacy to be taken a step up, at European level. He is now part of the organisation’s steering committee.

Emi’s top tip is to put the extra time available to you during the lockdown to do something for a worthy cause, or one that’s close to your heart – something which he’s doing right now.

He dealt with the isolation of his cancer experience through gaming, becoming an active member of online gaming communities. Today, he is using that background and experience, along with the extra time currently spent at home during lockdown, to explore creative ways to fundraise for Youth Cancer Europe through online gaming. He is currently organising an eSports charity tournament for both eSports teams and solo players – at the same time, he’s rallying together Romania’s biggest Twitch streamers for a huge charity streaming event to raise funds for a Romanian childhood cancer charity, of which he’s also a member.

Emi found gaming to be a great tool in dealing with isolation and the mental health challenges that come with it, with mental health also being a recognised and talked about issue within the gaming community. Through these fundraisers, Emi is using his own expertise to put back into the community and hoping to raise awareness for mental health issues among young cancer patients and survivors – a central topic of YCE’s upcoming 2021 Global Summit, which Emi is actively involved in organising.