“Early detection saves lives” was the chant as hundreds took to the streets of Georgetown to raise awareness on Breast Cancer as part of the activities to observe Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
The march, which was organised by the Ministry of Public Health commenced and culminated at Parade Ground on Middle Street.
Leading the march was Prime Minister Moses Nagamootoo, his wife Sita Nagamootoo, First Lady Sandra Granger, Public Health Ministers Volda Lawrence and Dr Karen Cummings along with several cancer survivors.
Cancer survivor Desiree Edghill said that the walk differed from the others in that it allowed cancer survivors to feel embraced. “When people see survivors walking I think that gives them some hope that I can fight this and I think what was good about this walk also is that there was a lot of education happening on the way… so I think it is important that we continue to walk and continue to let people know that early detection saves lives” Edghill underscored.
Also, a survivor, Minister of Public Health, Volda Lawrence who describes herself as a ‘cancer warrior’ said raising awareness is important since many women experience the symptoms but are afraid to let people know or face the issue head-on.
“When we come out in the public and we show them that even a minister or anyone, it does not matter who you are but you can have cancer and you can be a survivor, you can war against cancer. So, this is to encourage to come out and do their breast checks” Minister Lawrence stated.
Minister Karen Cummings noted that the huge turnout demonstrates that more people are aware of the issue. The Minister said that, “we certainly want to reduce the morbidity and mortality of cancers in general and more importantly breast cancer which is very common among women. So, I know that persons will learn to examine themselves every month so they can save their lives.”
One of the participants, Proverbs Jones came out to lend her support to those battling with cancer. “It is important to show respect to persons battling with breast cancer. I know it is not easy so they need motivation” Jones stated.
October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Governments and civil society groups and Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) use this annual observation to raise awareness about the disease and garner funds that will go towards research for treatment and a cure. (DPI)