Project Committee

World Child Cancer’s Project Committee is a board of volunteer healthcare professionals who respond to new project requests. They review project applications for 5 year plans, carry out needs assessment visits, and report on and recommend projects to the Board of Directors. Once projects are up and running, the Project Committee mentor and advise at both ends of the partnership as well as help develop all aims and objectives of the project plan. They continue to monitor projects and aid in fundraising for the work carried out. Please read more about our Project Committee members:

Ramandeep Arora

Ramandeep received his training in pediatric oncology at Alder Hey Children’s Hospital in Liverpool, UK. Ramandeep’s career began in India where he achieved his initial qualifications in pediatrics and then moved to UK and attained his MRCPCH. He has a keen interest in cancer epidemiology and did a research MD from the University of Manchester, UK. Ramandeep actively participates in the global efforts to improve the outcomes of children with cancer in resource-limited settings, especially in the effort in reducing abandonment of treatment. He is currently the Co-Chair of the SIOP PODC Abandonment of Treatment Working Group and Member of the SIOP PODC Core Committee. Raman, as he prefers to be called, lives in Manchester with his wife and enjoys swimming and playing tennis with his two young boys.

 

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Alison Finch 

Alison is Matron and Lead Nurse for Children and Young People’s Cancer at University College Hospital in London. Alongside her NHS roles, Alison has maintained a long standing interest in nursing overseas having volunteered over a number of years with an NGO in Azerbaijan, undertaken field trips to northern and southern India exploring the core values and role of nursing, and more recently in 2012 Alison visited Bangladesh with World Child Cancer to co-lead a nurse education program in our twinned hospital, BSMMU in Dhaka. Alison has a particular interest in nursing leadership and teenage and young adult cancer care. She is a published author and loves getting involved in nurse led research projects and activities. Alison has an MSc in advancing professional healthcare practice (palliative care) and was awarded an MBE for services to nursing in 2009.

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Marc Hendricks

Marc works as a Pediatric Oncologist at Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital in Cape Town, South Africa, where he trained as a Pediatrician and then as an Oncologist. Marc’s clinical work spans the broad remit of pediatric cancers including neuro-oncology, transplantation medicine and non-malignant hematology. He teaches at under- and post-graduate levels

and is an examiner for the College of Pediatricians of South Africa. His teaching and training responsibilities include training and Master’s research supervision for residents, and training of African supernumery Pediatricians in oncology. This program has already trained two Pediatricians from Uganda and one from Ghana. Since his appointment in 2008 he has been an active member of the South African Children’s Cancer Study Group, serving as the National Secretary from 2006-2010 and continues to serve on the national SACCSG committee to date. Marc is also actively involved in outreach to shared care centers in Port Elizabeth and East London where he travels to teach and consult, as well as being an active member of the weekly Red Cross online education and support platform to these centers and others, primarily Uganda, via C4K. As a member of SIOP he has participated in collaborations around supportive care recommendations for LMICs. He is currently part of a working group in SIOP PODC to design recommendations for the treatment of medulloblastoma in LMICs. In his spare time Marc is a musician and song writer, theatre lover and an avid cook.

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Stephen Hunger

Stephen Hunger, MD is a Medical Trustee of World Child Cancer USA who is a pediatric hematologist oncologist with over twenty years of experience and leadership roles in the field.

Dr. Hunger received a Bachelors degree in Applied Biology from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, a MD from the University of Connecticut School of Medicine and then completed training in Pediatrics at Johns Hopkins Hospital and Pediatric Hematology/Oncology at Stanford University School of Medicine. He has been a faculty member at academic center for almost 20 years and currently is Professor of Pediatric and Chief of the Section of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology/Bone Marrow Transplantation at the University of Colorado School of Medicine, and the Ergen Family Chair in Pediatric Cancer and Director of the Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders at Children’s Hospital Colorado.

Dr. Hunger’s research and clinical activities are focused on improving understanding of the molecular genetics of childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) and translating new discoveries into improved outcomes via clinical trials and linked translational research studies. He is the Chair of the Children’s Oncology Group (COG) ALL committee and in that role is responsible for oversight of the design and conduct of clinical trials and linked translational research studies that enroll over 2000 patient each year. Dr. Hunger is also the Leader of the Childhood ALL High Risk ALL TARGET (Therapeutically Applicable Research to Generate Effective Targets) Project, a multi-institutional collaborative genomics effort that has discovered new sentinel genetic lesions in childhood ALL that are leading to new therapies.

Dr. Hunger has extensive experience in international pediatric cancer. He has worked closely with international colleagues to increase collaboration in childhood ALL basic and translational research and to develop new collaborative clinical trials in high risk ALL subsets. Dr. Hunger directs a twinning relationship with the pediatric oncology programs in the Dominican Republic to improve outcome for children with ALL in that country. He has a major interest in developing graduated intensity therapy regimens to help centers in low and middle income countries implement treatments that are appropriate for their local conditions.

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Trijn Israels

Trijn is a Pediatric Oncologist who works for the Outreach Program of the Pediatric Hematology – Oncology Department at VU Medical Centre in Amsterdam, The Netherlands. She worked for two years as a general Pediatrician on the pediatric ward of the Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital in Blantyre, Malawi. During this time she conducted daily ward rounds on the childhood oncology ward and coordinated some locally relevant clinical studies which led to a PhD thesis ‘Management of Children with Cancer in Malawi’. She is the joint chair of SIOP PODC with Scott Howard and Coordinator of the SIOP PODC Working Group on Adapted Treatment regimens. This working group has produced consensus clinical guidelines for the management of children with Burkitt lymphoma, Wilms’ tumor, Kaposi sarcoma and concomitant supportive care in sub-Saharan Africa. Trijn is married and has a daughter and two sons (17, 14 and 12 years in 2014). In her spare time she likes outdoor activities such as running, cycling, hiking, camping, soccer, and field hockey.

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 Jan Kohler 

Jan worked as a senior lecturer in Pediatric Oncology in Southampton UK for 28 years, retiring from clinical practice in 2012. She was head of the department for many years, and enjoyed being part of a multi-disciplinary team, working closely with nursing and other non-medical colleagues. She loved teaching, and maintains a role within the postgraduate Deanery. Although participating in clinical trials for all types of solid cancer and leukaemia, Jan’s particular interest was neuroblastoma. She was chief investigator for several trials in the UK and Europe, and an active member of the SIOPEN group from its inception. She currently chairs the SAB of the Neuroblastoma Society. Jan is also interested in the cost-effectiveness of medical treatments, currently sitting on a NICE new drugs and technologies committee. This interest naturally extends to proposed treatments in less affluent countries. To relax, Jan plays in a wind band, enjoys a variety of sports, and visits her two medical sons.

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Catherine Lam 

Catherine is a Pediatric Oncologist at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, where she works in the International Outreach Program including as Medical Director of the Philippines Program and Asian Development, and with patients in the Solid Tumor Division.  Inspired early in her training by the resilience of children and adolescents with cancer and the care providers she encountered in remote parts of Niger, Uganda, Taiwan, and China, she completed her paediatric hematology/oncology training at Toronto SickKids, Canada, with a master in public health from Johns Hopkins, US.  Her specific interests include systems development and quality improvement practices in resource-limited settings, abandonment of treatment, palliative care, rare malignancies including adrenocortical tumors and nasopharyngeal carcinoma, and outcomes evaluation.  She is the Co-Chair for the SIOP PODC Abandonment of Treatment Working Group and Member of the SIOP PODC Core Committee.  Cath, as she is known among friends, loves creative writing and music.

 

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Sandra Luna-Fineman

Clinical Associate Professor, Pediatrics-Hematology & Oncology at Stanford School of Medicine.

Sandra Luna-Fineman, MD is a Medical Trustee of World Child Cancer USA who is a pediatric hematologist oncologist with over twenty years of experience and leadership roles in the field.

Dr. Luna-Fineman received a MD degree from the San Carlos University in Guatemala, and completed training in Pediatrics at New York University and Pediatric Hematology/Oncology at Stanford University School of Medicine. He has been a faculty member at academic center for almost 15 years and currently is Pediatrics-Hematology, Oncology and Stem Cell Transplantation at Stanford School of Medicine. She is a Fulbright Scholar and a member of COG (Children’s Oncology Group) since 1991.

Dr. Luna-Fineman’s research and clinical activities are focused on improving understanding of retinoblastoma and childhood lymphoma clinical outcomes, concentrating in resource-poor countries. She has worked with St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital International Outreach Program in improving early diagnosis, risk stratification and outcomes in Central America since 1999. She is Chair of the Retinoblastoma Committee of AHOPCA (Central American Hematology/Oncology Association) and co-Chair of the Graduated-intensity Committee of PODC (Pediatric Oncology Developing Countries) at SIOP (International Society of Pediatric Oncology).

Dr. Luna-Fineman has extensive experience in international pediatric cancer in Resource-poor countries. He has worked closely with international colleagues to increase collaboration in childhood cancer early diagnosis and therapy. She is a member of the UNOP (Unidad Nacional de Oncología Pediátrica) in Guatemala, the first freestanding oncology center for childhood cancer in Guatemala. She put together a multidisciplinary team for the treatment of retinoblastoma that is the referral center for Central America. She has helped in the implementation of a twinning center in Guatemala with SJCRH. Has collaborated in the implementation of graduated intensity protocols for Hodgkin lymphoma, Wilms’ tumor, germ cell tumors, and leukemias.  She is co-PI (with University of California, Berkeley) in a NIH-funded study of Epidemiology of Childhood Leukemia in Guatemala. He has a major interest in developing graduated intensity therapy regimens to help centers in low and middle income countries implement treatments that are appropriate for their local conditions, improving outcomes and studying their biology.

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Raul Ribeiro

Raul trained in Brazil and accepted a position as a Pediatric Hematologist / Oncologist at St Jude Children’s Research Hospital in 1990. In 1996 Raul was appointed Director of the St Jude International Outreach Program, and in 2007 was appointed Director of the St Jude Leukemia / Lymphoma Division. Raul specializes in acute leukemia, lymphomas and implementing pediatric cancer care programs in countries with limited resources. He has supervised the implementation of several successful twinning programs in pediatric oncology and is also a member of the Medical Committee for World Child Cancer.

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Louise Soanes

Louise is an experienced children’s and young people’s cancer nurse. She has worked at Great Ormond Street Hospital as a Nurse Practice Educator and has lectured in nursing at South Bank University. Before taking up her current role as Teenage Cancer Trust Nurse Consultant for Adolescents and Young People at the Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust she was the Trust’s Senior Sister for Children’s Services. She brings a wealth of experience to the Board and has had direct experience of programs in developing countries having visited child cancer wards in Bangladesh. As well as working full-time, Louise is studying for her professional doctorate in nursing and is the author of academic articles and books on nursing.

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 Abby White 

Abby White is co-founder and voluntary Chief Executive of Daisy’s Eye Cancer Fund, which has the mission of bringing optimal evidence based 0life and sight saving care to all children with retinoblastoma.  Abby’s father was diagnosed with bilateral retinoblastoma in Kenya in 1946, treated in England.  Abby was also born with tumors in both eyes.  She has an artificial eye and limited vision in her remaining eye that is now failing due to late effects of radiotherapy in infancy.  Abby studied geography at university, with a special emphasis on development in sub-Saharan Africa.  She co-ordinates activities of Daisy’s Eye Cancer Fund while also assisting individual families,  Abby enjoys creative writing, audio books, sailing, open water swimming and country walks with her guide dog, Annie.

 

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