IN commemoration of Cancer Survivor Month, the TT Cancer Society (TTCS), in partnership with the American Cancer Society, has introduced the 24-hour annual Global Relay For Life (GRFL) event. June is National Cancer Survivors Month but the relay will be hosted on July 8 and 9.
GRFL is a global movement that brings communities together to raise funds and awareness for cancer research, prevention, and support. It also aims to bring people of all ages, backgrounds, and experiences together in a display of unity and hope.
The society's chairwoman Dr Asante Le Blanc told Sunday Newsday the American Cancer Society approached TTCS to become a member country to host the event which is executed in over 30 countries around the world.
“The significance of GRFL is driven by cancer survivors, as we recognise them as the heroes of hope for others battling cancer.
“The event allows for strengthening of community and community spirit. It exemplifies hope, survivorship and determination to fight this disease. It allows for taking that step to healthier lifestyles, to share information on screening and risk factors and that is our true weapon against cancer," Le Blanc said.
She said becoming a member of the GRFL community, allows TTCS to network with other cancer societies worldwide and have an effective interchange of ideas as well as access to more research, "which allows for a strengthening of our advocacy and policy change, education, promotion of screening, diagnostics, treatment and overall support to our nation when it comes to cancer. As part of a global community, we have a stronger voice to effect the necessary policy changes that can only lead to a healthier society nationally and globally."
Le Blanc’s said the the TTCS’s objective has always been to create greater cancer awareness through education and to promote prevention by screening for early detection.
“We see this as an opportunity to bring our national commitment together to stand with us in our fight against cancer and as an initiative to raise much-needed funds.”
As part of its month-long drive, TTCS will boost its outreach drive to raise awareness at secondary school symposia for students throughout the country.
There will also be screening programmes for remote and undeserved communities.
The activities on July 8 take place at the Queen's Park Savannah and will include a survivor lap, supporters cancer walk, a 5K race, yoga and a luminaria ceremony – a ceremony of lights in which participants gather to remember and honour those who have been affected by cancer. The luminaries will be small paper bags that can be decorated and personalised with the names or messages of cancer survivors, those currently battling cancer, and those who have lost their lives to the disease.
On July 9 in Chaguaramas, there will be hike from the golf course to Macqueripe, and a mountain bike trail.
Le Blanc said individuals or groups can register.
For registration or information e-mail email@example.com or visit our website www.cancertt.com or call 280-3353 or 280-4536