Afaf Girgis: I am and I will (World Cancer Day)

1.     Who are you and what do you do?

I am Professor Afaf Girgis AM, a behavioural scientist. I lead the Psycho-oncology Research Group at UNSW and the Ingham Institute for Applied Medical Research. My team’s research focuses on understanding the full impact of cancer on individuals from all backgrounds and developing effective ways to minimise that impact. I lead and mentor my research team of staff and students, to support their journey to becoming the world-leading scientists of the future.

2.     What is your motivation (why do you do what you do)?

I am driven by my commitment to improve the lives of ALL people affected by cancer, including cancer patients, as well as the many who travel the long journey with them – their partners, family and caregivers. To achieve this, our research must be cutting edge and world leading, as we must train our research workforce to be excellent scientists. I want to improve the equity of access to our excellent cancer services, especially for people who live outside of main cities, and people of different language and cultural backgrounds.

3.     What will you do this World Cancer Day? I am and I will…….

I am a behavioural scientist and I will improve how cancer survivors and caregivers cope with cancer.