Below is the first broadcasted cancer fundraiser, from 1948: an interview of ‘Jimmy’ (Einar Gustavson). The Jimmy Fund (a major pediatric cancer charity) was founded after the tremendous response to this broadcast.

At 7.35, the host – after confirming that Jimmy can no longer hear the broadcast - says ‘Let’s make Jimmy happy. He doesn’t know he has cancer… Let’s make Jimmy and thousands of other boys and girls with cancer happy by aiding in the research of cancer in children.’


When – if ever – do you think it’s acceptable not to tell someone that they have cancer? Do you think this practice has changed for the better or worse?


Share your thoughts about this radio broadcast from 1948.

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The ICU was created by Brian Lobel and Complicite, in collaboration with South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust. Web design by Chipp Jansen, films by Simon Eves and design by StudioThreeSixty. It was made possible by support from the Cultural Institute at King's College London, the Wellcome Trust and the National Theatre.