The objective of Childhood Cancer Awareness Month is to put a spotlight on the types of cancer that largely affect children, survivorship issues, and importantly, to help raise funds for research and family support. Childhood Cancer Awareness? What does it mean? Ever wondered why people put on the gold ribbons? It is because they are getting along with the #GoGold September theme.
Every day children and families receive a diagnosis of childhood cancer. They are fighting and overcoming odds that no one should have to fight as a child. These kids take chemotherapy (poison in their little bodies) and radiation (high energy particles that are used to kill cancer cells). Kids with leukaemia are on these drugs for a minimum of 3 years, 5 days a week. These children's lives are turned upside down and their childhoods are lost due to something they never asked for. Children with cancer look different. They may be bullied and ostracized by other children because of ignorance. They are given extra attention by families and teachers. These families, if they are not educated, may not realize that treatment for childhood cancer can cause a lifetime of side effects. This will lead to more bills for the family, but what do the children feel? They feel frustration, anger, sadness, and lonely.
Some of the parents with children living with cancer have to travel long distances for instance travelling from Bikita just to come to Parirenyatwa Hospital which is the only Oncology centre for children surviving with cancer in Zimbabwe.
Let us support childhood cancer in Zimbabwe.