Prioritise Awareness as the International Childhood Cancer Awareness Month Starts in Style
The KidzCan Zimbabwe awareness campaign team took the International Childhood Cancer Awareness Month message to the Zimbabwe Agricultural Society Exhibition Show where scores of people passed through the stand to learn about childhood cancer as prioritising awareness took centre stage.
Observations show that only a few people know about childhood cancer and most encouraged KidzCan Zimbabwe to broaden the awareness programmes in order to increase the survival rate which currently is still low due to ignorance that results in late detection and treatment.
It was gratifying to note the interest generated, as KidzCan Zimbabwe explained the mandate and scope of operations and what difference the organisation is making in the community.
People wanted to know what cancers affect children and whether cancer is curable to which it was explained that indeed most of these cancers are curable provided they are detected early and treated.
The cancers that mostly affect children are retinoblastoma (eye cancer) Wilms Tumour (Kidney cancer), Leukaemia (cancer of the blood) neuroblastoma (affects nerves), Lymphomas (affect lymph nodes), bone cancer, and brain tumour.
The platform was a huge springboard from which to launch the September Gold celebrations as the world commemorates International Childhood Cancer Awareness Month this September.
An interview on ZiFM Stereo was a major highlight of the week as well as the visit by members of an apostolic sect, who showed interest in childhood cancer. Getting them to accept bandanas was a huge score.
It is possible to raise survival rate to 60% if Zimbabwe as a nation joins hands and ensure the childhood cancer awareness message reverberates in the corridors of power as well as every corner of the country, the thoroughfares and across all demographics.
The symbiotic relationship that KidzCan Zimbabwe continues to share with government has strengthened interventions that continue to save lives as well as the mainstreaming of the childhood cancer story.
It was also explained that KidzCan Zimbabwe gets its bigger portion of funding through local fundraising activities such as the Orange month, Mudrun, and gold etc.
Zimbabwe, like most low-to-medium income economies, has stunted childhood cancer survival rate of around 20% while by contrast, the developed world has 80%. This calls for robust awareness campaigns such as this.
800 people passed through the stand during the week