Primetown young adult summit ready for prime time

·2 min read

In a news release, Primetown 2022 is billed as a summit about sex and drugs and rock ‘n’ roll, but it’s not meant in quite the same was as the quirky 1977 hit of the same name by Ian Dury.

It’s the second annual cancer summit for young adults, being organized by Geoff Eaton’s Young Adult Cancer Canada (YACC) and Cancer Care Manitoba, and it’s got a sizable lineup.

More than 75 experts will offer over 50 online sessions from Thursday to Saturday nights, June 2-4. Registration is free.

Eaton, YACC’s founder and executive director, says last year’s event attracted more than 900 registrants, and they’re hoping to beat that this year.

"As is usually the case, we have a huge contingent from Newfoundland and Labrador, which we’re really glad about, and a huge representation from every single province,” he said Wednesday.

Eaton says while people like the idea of getting back to live events, the virtual aspect actually serves the organization well. All events are recorded and can be viewed at any time after the summit.

Eaton founded YACC in 2000, when it was initially called RealTime Cancer.

A cancer survivor, he found that people in their late teens and early adulthood didn’t seem to fit into the demographic of most cancer programs.

“It fits in that category, along with many others, of one of those things that’s really overlooked and neglected,” he said.

That’s one of the reasons sex is an important theme in Primetown. It’s a central part of life for young adults, and can be a major challenge for them.

The drug part mostly looks at information for professionals, including topics such as precision oncology and pain management.

“The rock ‘n’ roll piece is really kind of a core of YACC’s mission. We’re all about living and loving life. It’s about getting back to a life that is meaningful,” said Eaton.

“It’s not near as much about music as it is about the energy of rock ‘n’ roll.”

First started as a volunteer organization, YACC has about 10 paid staffers, and reaches a community of about 5,000 YACCers, as Eaton calls them.

More information can be found online at www.youngadultcancer.ca, or by calling 709-579-7325.

Peter Jackson, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Telegram

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