Amy Colver, LCSW
Melody Griffith, MSW, LMSW, OSW-C
AOSW Communications Director
Jeanice Hansen, LCSW, OSW-C
To submit a story or information for inclusion in a future issue of AOSW Newsletter, contact Amy Colver or Melody Griffith on the list above.
Adolescents & Young Adults SIG: New SIG Co-Coordinator & the AYA SIG Forum
We are thrilled to announce the addition of a new SIG Co-coordinator, Meghan Fitzgibbons, MSW, LGSW. Meghan works for the Ulman Cancer Fund for Young Adults at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda, Mayland, as a Patient Navigator for young adult active duty and military dependents facing cancer.
The National Comprehensive Cancer Coalition Network (NCCN) defines adolescents and young adults (AYA) as people ages 15 to 39 at the time of a cancer diagnosis. According to NCCN, in comparison to older adults and children, the AYA population has experienced minimal improvement in survival rates over the last two decades. Moreover, patients who are adolescents and young adults at the time of a cancer diagnosis experience a unique set of psychosocial issues—including a shift in personal identity, relationship and intimacy concerns, a potential for fertility complications, challenges with managing school/a job; affording medical care and a premature awareness of their mortality.
The purpose of the AYA SIG is to
- promote awareness of pertinent psychosocial issues faced by the AYA population;
- share information on effective clinical “best practices” and interventions;
- develop and disseminate resources designed to enhance the quality of life of AYA patients and their families;
- initiate research projects;
- inspire advocacy work targeted to enhance the quality of care delivered to AYA cancer patients and their families and,
- provide a forum of support for AOSW members working in the AYA field.
Should your work or personal interest involve this population, we strongly encourage you to sign up for the AYA SIG. Also, to increase the level of communication among SIG members and to access the latest updates about the AYA-related information and resources, please be sure to check out the AYA SIG Online Community. Anyone from the AYA SIG can post to the Online Community and we encourage everyone to do so!
There are two ways to access the AYA SIG:
- Go directly to the home page by clicking here
- Go to the “My Communities” tab in the AOSW “ribbon” and select “AYA SIG”
Once you’ve entered the AYA SIG, you will notice the home page with information about the SIG, recent forum/news posts and a menu on the right hand side of the page. The best way to stay engaged with what’s going on in the AYA SIG is to “subscribe” via email to the AYA SIG Forum.
Here are the steps to subscribe:
- On the right side of the menu, click on “Forums.”
- Click into “AYA SIG forum.”
- To get email updates on all posts, click on “Subscribe to Forum” and enter your email address. You will receive a confirmation email to confirm your subscription. That way, anytime someone posts, you will get an email update in your inbox.
- To post a new discussion topic, click on “New Thread.”
- To reply to someone’s post, click on their “thread” link (e.g., “Welcome!”, “AYA Forum FAQs”), scroll to the bottom and click on “Reply.”
Need some training on how to navigate all this? Here is a video created by AOSW to help you learn.
We welcome your feedback!