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Children with Cancer UK is one of the UK’s leading funders of research into childhood cancer.

We fund a broad variety of research aimed at improving our understanding of childhood cancer and improving the outlook for young patients.

COVID – 19 - Advice to research grant holders

At Children with Cancer UK, we understand that the COVID-19 pandemic will have a significant impact on research activities and the researchers we are funding.  During this difficult time we intend to provide a supportive and flexible approach to our research awards in order to address issues as sympathetically and reasonably as possible. Follow the link below to find information for anyone who currently holds a Children with Cancer UK research grant.

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Our conferences and workshops

Through our regular conferences and workshops, we bring together stakeholders in childhood cancer treatment and research to exchange knowledge and ideas.

We aim to provide a forum for clinicians, scientists and other stakeholders to discuss and debate key themes, share knowledge and develop new collaborations.

International Childhood Cancer Conference 2019

We are delighted to announce Childhood Cancer 2019: Exploiting genomic medicine throughout the patient journey.
Newcastle, 9th & 10th September 2019

Childhood Cancer 2019 conference More about previous conferences and workshops

Funding Opportunities

2019 Research Grant Call: £3 million

2019 Research Grant Call for Research into Childhood Cancer Treatment and Survival

Children with Cancer UK’s mission is a threefold one of “Cause, Care, Cure”.

We are seeking proposals for research projects that address improved treatment for and survival from childhood and young person cancer and into improved quality of ongoing life.

Deadline for preliminary proposal 05/04/2019

Invitations for full proposals 17/05/2019

Deadline for full proposals 26/06/2019

We hope to announce awards by the end of November 2019

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2018 Research Grant Call: £2.5 million

2018 Grant Call for research into childhood and young person cancer causes and prevention

The deadline for preliminary applications has now passed.

Children with Cancer UK’s mission is a threefold one of “Cause, Care, Cure”.

This grant call is for proposals for research projects that address causal and promotional factors and possible preventative actions relating to the risk of cancer in children and young persons. There will be other, treatment-related, grant calls announced early in 2019.

Deadline for preliminary application 25/01/2019

Invitations for full proposals 01/03/2019

Deadline for full proposals 18/04/2019

We hope to announce awards by mid-September 2019

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Grants for the support of conferences and meetings

We provide funding to support relevant conferences, meetings and workshops.

This funding stream is open throughout the year.

We will provide funding of up to £10,000 to support the cost of conferences where either the whole event or specific sessions are relevant to one or more of our research aims.

Specialist meetings
We will provide funding of up to £10,000 to support the cost of organising small meetings or workshops on specialist topics of relevance to one or more of our research aims.

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Research strategy

The incidence of childhood cancer increased through the second half of the 20th century and continues to increase today. 

Incredible progress has been made in treating childhood cancers but the pace of progress has now slowed and a substantial minority of patients are failed by therapy and do not survive.

In addition, tremendous gains in survival have been achieved through the use of increasingly intensive treatment regimens, putting young patients at risk of adverse, treatment-related effects.

  • We want to understand more about why children develop cancer, to find explanations for the increase in risk and to establish whether prevention is a possibility
  • We want to drive forward the development of novel approaches to diagnosis, identification of markers of likely outcome and improved treatments for childhood cancer in order to tackle those forms which still elude successful treatment and to minimise the risk of adverse, treatment-related effects
  • We want to understand more about the long-term risks faced by childhood cancer survivors, of whom there are now more than 30,000 in the UK.

These research aims can be broken down into the following objectives:

  1. To improve knowledge of the genetic and environmental causes and relevant biological mechanisms of childhood cancers
  2. To identify diagnostic and prognostic biomarkers for childhood cancers
  3. To optimise and develop more effective and less toxic treatments for children with cancer, with a special focus on those forms of cancer that still carry a poor prognosis
  4. To understand the long-term health implications of childhood cancer and its treatment
  5. To promote the dissemination of research findings to achieve maximum impact

We will address these objectives via the following funding streams:

  • Project grants: we will provide project funding for research addressing objectives 1-4 above
  • Postdoctoral research fellowships: we will provide support for outstanding postdoctoral researchers to develop their careers in childhood cancer research
  • Clinical Studentships: we will provide support for clinicians wishing to develop a dual career that combines novel research with clinical practice
  • Support for conferences and meetings: to facilitate dissemination of research findings and encourage collaboration we will provide funding to support key sessions at relevant conferences and to fund specialist meetings or workshops.

Assessment Process

Assessment Process

The exact remit of each funding call is determined by our Scientific Advisory Panel (SAP).
Project Grants, Fellowships and Studentships awards are annual calls, with a two-stage application process.
The first stage is submission of a short preliminary application giving an outline of the proposed research – the aims, methods and the credentials of the research team.
Preliminary applications are reviewed by the SAP. The most promising applications are taken through to the second stage, with applicants invited to submit a detailed proposal. Short-listed Fellowship and Studentship applicants will also be interviewed.

Peer Review

The detailed research proposals are reviewed by external experts, from the UK and overseas, selected according to their relevance to the proposed research.
External reviewers are asked to complete a form commenting on the originality, importance, design and costing of the proposal. Project Grant applicants have the opportunity to respond to these comments.

Final Decisions

The applications, reviews and responses are then sent to members of our SAP who meet to discuss each application and agree which projects to recommend to the Trustees for funding, taking into account the overall balance of projects.
The Trustees make the final decisions, on the basis of advice from the SAP and the amount of funding available.

Our Scientific Advisory Panel


Children with Cancer UK is a member of the Association of Medical Research Charities (AMRC), which sets minimum standards of good practice to which member charities must adhere in their grant-making, including policies on peer review.

We are also a member of the National Cancer Research Institute (NCRI), a partnership of UK cancer funders.


International Childhood Cancer Conference 2019

Register today

We are delighted to announce Childhood Cancer 2019: Exploiting genomic medicine throughout the patient journey.
Newcastle, 9th & 10th September 2019

Find out more
Presentation videos

Osteosarcoma Research Symposium.

In January 2019, Children with Cancer UK and the Bone Cancer Research Trust came together to hold the first ever International Osteosarcoma Research Symposium.

You can watch videos of each of the presentations.

Watch the videos
New osteosarcoma research

In memory of 11 year old Frankie

Following the first ever International Osteosarcoma Research Symposium, Children with Cancer UK and the Bone Cancer Research Trust announced their new partnership to advance research into osteosarcoma – in  memory of 11 year old Frankie.

Find out more

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