KidzCan in awareness drive

KidzCan has urged the nation to take a lead role in the fight against childhood cancer to promote awareness and early detection in order to aid survival rate among those affected.

Nurse and health promotions coordinator Charity Kawadza was speaking at a childhood cancer campaign at Westridge Primary School this week, where she encouraged everyone to get involved.

“Everyone has a role to play in the fight against childhood cancer. We are happy that we see you in good health today and we want it to continue like that,” she said.

Kawadza explained that bandanas are used to cover the head because when one is sick and are on cancer treatment called chemotherapy hair sometimes falls off.

“Through wearing the bandana we become uniform thereby showing solidarity with our sick friends,” said Kawadza.

“Cancer in children can be cured if detected on time, this is why we have come here to teach you about the various cancers that affect people of your age and how they show so that if detected early you also get treated immediately,” said Kawadza. 

The common cancer diseases among children are eye cancer (retinoblastoma), kidney cancer (Wilm’s Tumour), blood cancer (Leukaemia), lymph node cancer (Lymphomas), bone cancer, cancer of the brain (brain tumour), and neuroblastoma.

Statistics show that 67 children died of cancer in Zimbabwe last year.

In developing countries, which include Zimbabwe 8 out of 10 children diagnosed with cancer die compared to 2 out of 10 in the developed countries. 

This calls for children-specific cancer awareness programmes, the strengthening of diagnostic and treatment facilities and ensuring they have access to essential medicines.

She said the awareness programme is important because it ensures that children get to learn about the various cancers affecting them thereby promoting early detection and treatment.

On Orange Day, children attend school wearing orange and bring a donation that goes towards the treatment of paediatric cancer sufferers and their families.

The International Childhood Cancer Day is celebrated on the 15th of February and serves as both a national and global platform for the community of nations to raise awareness, celebrate achievements in childhood cancer, and express support for children with cancer, the survivors and their families.

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