BY ESTHER AKPOTOWO
Chukwuma Cancer Care Foundation in collaboration with the Delta Ministry of Health and Medical Women Association has organized a walk and run awareness campaign on breast and cervical cancer.
The walk was kicked off at the Steven Keshi Stadium to Arcade. The event which drew stake holders from the health sector was largely graced by women of all ages who enthusiastically engaged in the rigorous exercise while creating awareness on the reality of breast and cervical cancer.
The director of operations at the Chukwuma Cancer Care Foundation, Mrs Benita Onyebuchi, said that the aim of the walk and run exercise was to reach out to the public to educate them on the reality of cancer.
She expressed enthusiasm that the event was going to be a success as one of the aims of the foundation is being achieved. According to her, most people have the notion that cancer ,especially breast cancer is a death sentence.
“This is why the day has been set aside to tell people that cancer can be defeated if detected early,” she said. She said that the foundation has the mandate to carry out an awareness campaign on breast cancer as well as free screening for all interested participants every year.
She stated that the main aim and objective of the foundation is to build a cancer screening center where women could easily access screening and receive the necessary care.
In an interview with EMERALD NEWS, the Delta state focal person for cancer, Dr. Uche Okwe, said that the event was slated to sensitize the public on cervical and breast cancer.
According to her “breast cancer is a common occurrence in Nigeria especially among woman”. She said that “there is an increase in mortality rate occasioned by breast cancer and cervical cancer”.
She emphasizedon the fact that early detection is the key to survival from breast and cervical cancer. She advised every woman who has developed breast to always go for check up so as to commence treatment in event of a detection of breast or cervical cancer.
She also advised people who are cancer patient not hide but to come out as treatments for the diseases are available. She emphasized that breast or cervical cancer is not a death sentence.
Dr Ngozi Nzekwe the President of Medical Women Association Delta State chapter, urged women to be more proactive concerning their health especially as regards breast cancer and cervical cancer. She advised women to engage in personal self examination at least once every month.
She added that women who are below forty years are advised to carry out a self breast examination after seven days of their menstrual flow.
As forw women who are above forty or pregnant, she advised them to cross examine their breast on a fixed day of the month. She advised women above forty years and those who have a family history of breast cancer to go for mammogram.
She called on all women not to hesitate to go for medical attention if they detect any lump, or liquid coming from the nipples of the breast. She emphasized that breast cancer is 100% curable if detected early.
Also in attendance was Permanent Secretary of the Delta state ministry of health, Dr. Minie Oseji, the National President of Medical Women Association of Nigeria MWA.
She said that a lot has been done to control cancer in the area of creating awareness and screening and support for indigent cancer patients.
According to her “whatever we can do to make sure that we get more people to participate in all these efforts, I believe is a worthy venture. So I am here today to join all those who have come out to walk and run together to fight cancer.
“I am sure that if we all work together we can surely make a difference and besides, the exercise is good for our health.”
The event featured a walk from the stadium to Arcade in Asaba. Participants who were dressed in pink T-shirt and Face cap flagged placards with catchy words to sensitize people on the reality of breast cancer. Fly outs on breast and cervical cancer were distributed to people as the walk and run progressed to Arcade.