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BAME Forum

The Black, Asian and minority ethnic forum brings together all our staff and students to meet and help promote diversity and drive greater equality in our workplaces.

Jointly run by The Institute of Cancer Research, London and The Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust, the forum brings together all our staff and students to meet with other colleagues, learn about each other's experiences, and provides a space to discuss issues and push for initiatives that can help promote diversity and drive greater equality in our workplaces.

BAME forum group

Our forum meets regularly, both through informal monthly ‘lunch and chats’, and through our formal quarterly Forum meetings which we use to progress initiatives that support equality and diversity in the workplace.

We also run a seminar series, where we invite both internal and external speakers to share their career insights and experiences with colleagues.

Recent speakers have included Professor Udai Banerji, Deputy Director of the Drug Development Unit at the ICR and The Royal Marsden, who delivered a thought-provoking talk on what makes us different – and why we should celebrate this.

We’ve also heard from Yvonne Coghill, Director for the NHS Workforce Race Equality Standard Implementation. In her lecture, Yvonne discussed some of the issues facing the NHS – both for patients from a BAME background and in the equality and diversity of the NHS workforce – particularly across management and leadership roles.

We also hold regular social events to bring staff together across the whole of our two organisations. To find out more about the forum, please get in touch with our Forum chairs, Naa-Anyima Boateng and Jess Yanwube.


Naa-Anyima Boateng, Institute of Cancer Research Chair

Naa-Anyima is a Higher Scientific Officer within the Breast Cancer Now Histopathology Core Facility. 

Naa-Anyima Boateng

“My family are from Ghana in West Africa and my parents have always taught me to be as proud of my African heritage as I am of being British. Although I have always been very much aware of racism I grew up in a multicultural community in East London, so my first personal experience as a victim of racism did not happen until my University Year in Industry placement.  This incident made me aware of just how important safe places and representation can be for those who experience racism and other forms of discrimination.  

This is why I am so proud and excited to be a member of the BAME forum here at the ICR and the Royal Marsden. This forum will provide a space for all staff who self-define as BAME to discuss and resolve our challenges, as well as acknowledging our successes and achievements as BAME professionals.  Just as the ICR is a leader in research and development, it must also lead as a workplace that champions equality and celebrates diversity.”  

Contact Naa-Anyima Boateng


Jessica Yanwube, The Royal Marsden Chair

Jessica is the Cyberknife Patient Pathway Coordinator at The Royal Marsden and an NHS Workforce Race Equality Standard expert.

Jess Yanwube

“I was born and raised in South London but my first language was Twi (native Ghanaian language), and I first learnt to speak English when I went to nursery.  My heritage has always been a huge part of my upbringing and it's always something I've been able to hold with pride. This is due to going to schools with great diversity and having people around me who looked the same as me, spoke the same as me, and had common interests. I strongly believe representation matters, even as we all celebrate our individualities and differences.

I believe the BAME forum should be a place where people from all backgrounds can come and feel comfortable and also to be a safe place to voice any concerns or worries, one may have. I am concerned about statistics that for example, show that as a person from an ethnic minority you are less likely to be recruited into an NHS trust, whilst being more likely to receive a disciplinary – and I hope our work as a group can help to address some of these issues.”

Contact Jessica Yanwube

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