It’s the first of November, not only the time for Halloween parties to finish and for thinking ahead to Christmas but also the day myself and many of my friends have been excited for. For the past six months or so CLIC Sargent’s Young People’s Reference Group (YPRG) who are a kind of advisory group of young people who have lived with cancer which I am a member of have been working alongside the charity in their rebranding process. Yes you read that right they are finally rebranding!
After having discussed this with the staff a good three or four years ago when I first got involved I am so happy to have seen it through to an actual new brand launch, it’s been a quick turnaround since Kate (Chief Exec) stepped into the role last year and I can’t think of a more perfect person to head up the charity. I always slip into saying we, “we are rebranding ” “this is our new brand.” I don’t work for the charity but I have been supported by them and I have been involved with them in a voluntary capacity for a while now. We are a team, us ‘young people’ couldn’t share our thoughts, ideas and opinions as well as gain new skills and confidence without the staff and I’ve learn that without us the staff wouldn’t know if something they were doing wouldn’t work for young cancer patients, they wouldn’t have the people to wander in to the Chief Exec and say why aren’t you thinking about this? We are a team, a team that wants to improve the services for future young people affected by cancer. A team I am immensely proud to be a part of.
Being a kind of ‘veteran’ of participating at CLIC Sargent I’ve been able to influence alot of changes, they now have a Young Trustee which is something me and a friend suggested years ago. I’ve seen the Chair of Trustees and the Chief Executive change but the dedication of the staff, of the other young people I volunteer with has never wavered. The new brand feels like we’re shouting that dedication to the world and it’s amazing, we are finally able to show what the charity is really about, no longer using a brand that’s quiet and weak.
The new brand is everything it always should have been, there will be no more confusion about who CLIC Sargent are or what they do because for a refreshing change we’re shouting it to the masses, the new brand and slogan say so clearly what the charity does that I won’t have to keep explaining it every time I talk about it.
Young Lives vs Cancer. It’s a team, a fight that CLIC Sargent is there for from beginning to end and beyond. The new brand is a perfect example of our teamwork, I’ll be honest I wasn’t overly sure about the slogan Young Lives vs Cancer at first because I didn’t want it to seem as if those who didn’t survive put up any less of a fight because they don’t but it’s not about that. Whether those diagnosed survive or not they all fight, they are all heroes and they all deserve to have someone right next to them fighting their corner when they are too tired to. That’s CLIC Sargent. It’s Young Lives against Cancer, strong, supported and able to have their voice heard over the sea of family member’s worries, professional’s jargon and uncertainties that comes with a cancer diagnosis. CLIC Sargent often steps in when others check out, when people don’t know how to handle it, CLIC Sargent is there, it always has been but now people will see the brand and instantly know that.
I love the new brand, I’m proud to have been a part of it, to have been a part of the process and be involved so much with a charity that really does change lives and brighten the journey for so many across the country. The new clothing and colours are absolutely fab, no more pink flowers, no more feeling like I have to explain every time or people assuming it’s a charity only for children. We finally have a brand I can wear out and about, a black hoodie instead of a pink one which is much more effective with it’s message, one that I don’t need to explain, that reflects the charity properly. It’s loud, proud and perfect.
I’m so lucky that I took the first step all those years ago to walk into a room full of strangers and start participating and sharing my views with CLIC Sargent, since then I’ve created my own little family within the work I do with them. The last Reference Group meeting where we all tried on the new brand clothing was amazing, I can’t tell you how excited we all were. As the YPRG, we’re a team, one of us is doing well, we’re all doing well…one of us struggles, we all struggle and it’s exactly like the relationship CLIC Sargent has with their service users, a team, a family that doesn’t only understand but also accepts that we’re all individual and tailors it’s services to that. The people I’ve met through my work with the charity have changed my life and are some of the closest friends I could ever wish for.
Above – The YPRG celebrating our first glimpse at the new brand, shoulder to shoulder and hand in hand just like CLIC Sargent is with each family they support.
Don’t just take my word for it, this is what my fellow YPRG member and lovely friend Pete has to say on the new brand:
“I’m really excited about the launch of CLIC Sargent’s new branding. The new aesthetic is something which I can align myself with, something which I would not only be comfortable with, but would be proud to wear stamped across my chest. I can also see it being a brand which my friends and peers identify with and would be interested in getting involved with, which is awesome!
I have always loved CLIC Sargent, but I’ve never liked the old branding. I thought it was saying completely wrong thing about the charity; looking quite weak, apologetic, flimsy and girly. While the childish look of the old branding was great at getting across the point that it was a children’s charity, the downside was that it was excluding the fact that CLIC Sargent supports young adults too.
CLIC Sargent’s new branding is bold and brilliant. The big capital letters are anything but flimsy, and present the charity as what it is: strong and relentless; a vital support system for many families; a voice for those who aren’t in any fit state for their own to be heard. I think it’s awesome that CLIC Sargent have kept the pink from their old branding, to keep the charity recognisable amongst supporters, but think it is even more awesome that the colour is now juxtaposed with harsh masculine monochromes, to make the brand gender-neutral. The new CLIC Sargent is a louder, prouder, stronger, more self-assured brand which I’m already eager to associate myself with.
Thank you CLIC Sargent, for everything you do, letting me be involved in so many things that develop my skills, for being the reason I’ve made so many solid friendships and most of all for listening to us and finding a way to continue to improve services.
Join the fight today at http://www.clicsargent.org.uk/
You can see how much fun I had taking photos in my new brand gear below.