Each year in Ireland, there are over 20,000 new cases of cancer and over 7,500 cancer deaths, accounting for almost one quarter of the annual death toll. Despite the fact that cancer will affect one in three of us, the human story behind the statistics remains largely hidden and untold. Even the word is taboo. There is a pressing need to raise awareness of the humanity and dignity that exists in a world where suddenly an individual – young or old – has to face their own mortality.
Me and the Big C does just that. A six part observational series made by Animo Television for TV3, Me and the Big C documents the complex stories of people living with cancer in the South-West of Ireland. It is a significant look at contemporary Irish experiences with the illness through the first-hand accounts of everyday people. Based in three of the main hospitals that provide the essential cancer services for the region, the series follows the stories of twelve patients, their families and their medical staff as they engage with the challenges that this disease presents.
All twelve patients were at various stages of their illness ranging from those who have just been diagnosed to others who were at the end of a long struggle . Behind the illness, the politics, the medical terminologies and interventions, is a personal story. These are complex but touching human narratives. Cancer is a sickness that changes a person’s life utterly and a person must deal with all that goes with it as best they can. This series is about focusing on the human stories – the most effective tool for raising awareness and advocacy of important issues, while engaging audiences at the same time.