Patient Group Mentoring programme


Strengthening and connecting patient groups at the regional level 

About the programme

Launched in 2018, the Patient Group Mentoring programme is a tailored mentorship programme dedicated to building capacity of a representative cohort of patient groups at the regional level.

The programme works with patient-driven organisations that face challenges in accessing opportunities, while having the minimum capacity to engage in the offered opportunities and clear potential for growth in their region and beyond.

The main objective of this programme is that patient groups are engaged and heard as a key partners in the cancer community and health systems, at the local, regional and global levels. Through tailored assistance to access capacity building opportunities and efforts to connect patient groups, UICC adapts its approach to the specific needs of patient groups in relevant regions.


  • Increase peer-to-peer support and collaborations between patient groups through dedicated activities and platforms
  • Maximise the representation of patients’ voices in the cancer community at the regional and global level
  • Ensure access to UICC capacity building opportunities and other membership benefits, through tailored assistance and development of dedicated activities.
  • Connect patient groups with key relevant initiatives at the regional and global levels, through a mapping of opportunities and connections with partners and stakeholders

How does the programme work?  

In each region:

  • Patient groups are invited to apply to join the programme. Selection criteria are based on needs, geographical and cancer type representation, level of development, potential for growth and minimum capacity to engage in capacity building opportunities (e.g. basic level in English is required).
  • All groups complete a needs assessment and have the opportunity to flag additional needs as they arise. On this basis, a mapping of regional and global opportunities (from UICC and from other stakeholders in the region) is defined and shared with the groups.
  • A virtual collaborative platform is made available for groups to share their activities and access resources. In some regions, additional social netwoking is also established, to increase interaction and to facilitate the exchange of information.
  • UICC coordinates regular virtual meetings (monthly) for all groups to share information, collaborate and showcase opportunities. A dedicated programme of collective activities is coordinated by UICC, such as webinars on specific topics deemed relevant (e.g. digital fundraising or advocacy).
  • When possible, UICC capitalises on convening activities (from UICC and other stakeholders) at the regional level to ensure that patient groups participate in these events and represent the voice of cancer patients in key regional cancer events.

Benefits from the programme

1.  Sponsored full membership

2.  Have a voice in regional and global cancer control fora, share the patient perspective by engaging as speakers, contributors or participants.

3.  Access a full range of adapted capacity building opportunities, including learning through Master courses, Virtual Dialogues and other activities

4.  Gain more confidence in engaging with other stakeholders in their own setting

5.  Share experience and knowledge with peers at the regional and global levels

6.  Access tailored assistance and materials for creating momentum on relevant dates, particularly through World Cancer Day

7.  Be part of convening opportunities such as the Virtual Dialogues, World Cancer Congress and World Cancer Leaders’ Summit

8.  Benefit from outreach about key opportunities from UICC, its members, partners and network (e.g. City Cancer Challenge, NCD Alliance)

9.  Be informed about key global commitments in cancer control (e.g. Global Strategy on cervical cancer elimination or the Cancer Resolution)

10.  Be connected with a network of 1,200 cancer organisations worldwide


The programme in the regions

The programme is currently being deployed in two regions, Asia Pacific and Eastern Mediterranean. To learn more about the programme in these regions, we encourage you to visit the dedicated pages: 

 The Patient Groups Mentoring programme is kindly supported by Bristol Myers Squibb (BMS), MSD and Roche.


 Contact us

If you are interested by the Patient Group Mentoring programme, please contact the regionalisation team at:


Last update: 
Thursday 30 June 2022