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19

Nov 2010

Advocates in Action

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EARLY DETECTION AND REGULAR CHECK-UPS HOLD\r\n\r\nKampala October 30th, 2010, Uganda Women’s Cancer Support Organisation (UWOCASO) joined    the rest of the world to mark October international breast cancer awareness month.  UWOCASO in partnership with Uganda’s Ministry of Health, Uganda Cancer Institute, WBS Television and WAVA  Water, N.C Beverages and Blue Cube  Ltd organized a 3rd Annual Breast cancer awareness charity walk.\r\n\r\nParticipants who turned up for the event matched in unity against breast cancer from Parliament of Uganda, through Kampala streets to Kitante Primary Schools for speeches. Breast cancer survivors, advocates, supporters from all parts of the country convened at Parliament of Uganda to show their support to breast cancer awareness.\r\n\r\nIn his speech which was read by Hon. Pherry  Kabanda Member of Parliament of Uganda , the chief walker (The Prime Minister of the republic of Uganda, Prof. Apollo Nsibambi)  noted that globally cancer kills more people that HIV/AIDS, TB and malaria put together. More than 75% of the new cancer cases and cancer deaths will be in the developing countries especially sub-Sahara Africa. More than 70% of cancer in developing countries is diagnosed too late for cure. In short cancer in developing countries is a looming crisis but which remains a silent crisis.\r\nIn Uganda the increase in cancer cases is attributed to:- changing life styles, viral infections and environmental changes. This is compounded by poor access to health services and low levels of awareness about cancer. “We are aware that only 4% of cancer diagnosed currently present for treatment at the Uganda Cancer Institute, which implies 96% die without the needed medical care” he said.\r\n“As Government of Uganda we want to congulatulate UWOCASO for the recommendable job of raising awareness about cancer to the general population” He reminded participants of  Uganda’s approach to HIV/AIDS whereby raising public awareness paid dividends in reducing the rates of infection.\r\n\r\nHe added that organizing such a charity walk and other activities to raise awareness UWOCASO is assisting government and stakeholders in health with a critical step in the fight against cancer, specifically breast and cervical cancer.\r\nHe mentioned that Government is already in the process of granting full autonomy to the Uganda Cancer Institute so that UWOCASO’S request for researched data to back your lobbying and advocacy activities is readily available. He added that government will continue to support other cancer control related measures such as equipping regional referral hospitals so that these can handle cancer patients from these regions.\r\nHe urged participants to make it a responsibility to share and spread the theme of this Charity Walk namely: “Early Detection and Regular Check-ups Hold the Key”.\r\n\r\nDr. Isaac Ezati, Director of Planning and Development in the Ministry of Health informed participants that the Ministry recognizes UWOCASO’S efforts to increase awareness about breast and cervical cancers in Uganda. He saluted the organization for educating the public the importance of early diagnosis and treatment by always sharing survivors’ experiences with the public. He demonstrated steps of Breast Self Examination (BSE) to participants and urged both men and women to always check their breasts and always to be cautious of any abnormalities. He pledged on behalf of the Ministry of Health to support UWOCASO’s activities and programs.\r\n\r\nActivities of the day included breast and cervical cancer educational sessions at different partners’ exhibition stalls, networking and distribution of IEC materials. Kitante Primary school pupils entertained participants with cancer powerful messages through songs and poems.\r\nWe thank our sponsors, partners and collaborators who made it possible for UWOCASO to increase awareness and support world cancer declaration.  About World Cancer Declaration visit www.uicc.org

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05

Jul 2010

Government Action On Breast Cancer

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Kampala July 3rd 2010, Ugandan Ministry of Health pledged to donate an outreach van to Uganda Women’s Cancer Support Organisation (UWOCASO) as a way of scaling up cancer awareness programs in the country.  This was disclosed by Dr. Asuman Lukwago, Permanent Secretary , Ministry of Health at the 1st fundraising dinner which was organized by UWOCASO on July 3rd 2010, at Imperial Royale hotel in Kampala. At the dinner which was officiated by the Deputy Speaker of Parliament of Uganda Rt. Hon. Rebecca Kadaga, the Permanent Secretary expressed Ministry’s gratitude towards UWOCASO efforts to raise awareness and support patients without resources.  He pledged on behalf of the Health Ministry to support and partner with UWOCASO to intensify cancer awareness programs throughout the country.

\r\nWhile applauding Ministry of Health’s pledge to donate a vehicle towards Uganda women’s Cancer Support organization (UWOCASO)’s activities, the guest of honor Rt. Hon. Rebecca Kadaga Deputy Speaker of Parliament of Uganda  cautioned doctors to engage in research so that the cause of breast cancer be known, she encouraged practising doctors to always talk to their patients about breast cancer and where possible perfom a clinical breast examination as part of thier procedure.\r\n\r\nShe challenged the Ministry of Health about the insufficiency of equipments and facilities for cancer treatment which are only based in Kampala.\r\n\r\nThe chairperson of UWOCASO, Mrs. Speciosa Kabwegyere in her speech thanked members of UWOCASO for the tireless efforts during the preparations and subsequent success of the function. In a special way she thanked corporate organizations and individuals who contributed, donated, participated and made the dinner a success. She informed guests that the dinner was a landmark event for fundraising, partnerships and networking in order to fight the increasing incidences and breast cancer mortalities in Uganda.\r\n\r\nThe dinner was organized under the theme “Hope After cancer, Early detection and regular check-ups holds the key” with an objective to increase awareness about breast and cervical cancers, end stigma about the disease and raise funds for outreach programs.\r\n\r\nAt the event survivors entertained guests by performing a skit about breast cancer journey which was followed by a fashion show and modeling on stage.  This was evident to guests that there is quality life after cancer as this was clearly demonstrated by survivors’ warm participation in fahion show and modelling on stage. Educational materials about breast cancer and breast self examination  were also distributed to all guests as a way of increasing awareness.\r\n\r\nThe dinner opened with  acolorful candle lighting moment and prayers in memory of all those that had lost their battle to breast and other cancers. Atter a delicious meal the function was concluded with an auction which attracted many pledges and donations towards the noble cause.

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20

Jun 2010

Hope After Cancer

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EARLY DETECTION AND REGULAR CHECK-UPS HOLD THE KEY.

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KAMPALA – June 17, 2010 Breast cancer, although deadly and seemingly on the increase, can be cured, once detected early, but the key to making this possible, lies in regular checkups, not only for women but also men, since recent statistics have also shown men are also susceptible to the disease.

\r\nGlobally the cancer burden is on the increase especially in the developing world. WHO estimates that most of this increase will be in the developing countries especially in Sub-Saharan Africa. Breast cancer is the most frequently diagnosed cancer and the leading cause of cancer death among women globally. About 1.3 million women are diagnosed each year. At this rate 32.5 million women will be diagnosed during the next 25 years. About 465,000 women die from the disease each year. At this rate 11.6 million women will die from breast cancer during the next 25 years, more than 70% will be in developing countries.\r\n

Somewhere in the world, someone dies from breast cancer every 68 seconds!!!

\r\nIn Uganda available statistics indicate that the incidence of breast cancer has been on the increase. It was 11 per 100,0002 women in 1961, 22 per 100,0002 women in 1995 and 36 per 100,0002 women in 2009. The 5 –year survival rate is 56% 2as compared to US with 89% and 76% for Europe. Breast cancer in Uganda is common in young women with a median age of 41 years.\r\n\r\nUganda Women’s Cancer Support Organisation (UWOCASO) is an organization founded by women who were treated for breast cancer and cured. It is an organization of breast cancer survivors.\r\n\r\nThe major objective of UWOCASO is creating awareness about breast and cervical cancers so that women can adopt practices of “Breast Self Examination (BSE)”, routine screening and reporting early for treatment.\r\nFrom our experience as survivors, we have come to realize that the community, especially the immediate family, can play a huge role in encouraging individuals to regularly go for testing, and where the family member has been diagnosed as having cancer, the family will still play a much bigger role in mobilizing resources, hope and social support, all of which are critical in making recovery possible.\r\n

Based on this experience UWOCASO is involved in the following activities:-

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a) Raising awareness through various media channels\r\nb) Organizing public events and advocacy,\r\nc) Offering peer support and sharing survivorship issues and challenges\r\nd) Offering patient support and counseling services in hospitals and homes\r\ne) Capacity building for survivors and community\r\nf) Conducting cancer education at Uganda Cancer Institute and breast cancer clinics, Mulago hospital, KCC clinics at Nkrumah Road and Kawempe, Universities and Tertiary institutions\r\ng) Conducting breast health education for organized women groups, universities, and other tertiary institutions as well as corporate bodies.\r\nh) Joining the Uganda Cancer Institute Mobile Mammogram Van Team to conduct breast cancer education in institutions and communities.\r\ni) Fundraising

\r\nIn order to continue to implement these activities, UWOCASO is organising a Dinner /Fashion show on Saturday 3rd July, 2010 at Imperial Royale Hotel, Kampala. The Guest of Honour will be The Rt. Hon. Rebecca Kadaga, Deputy Speaker, Parliament of Uganda.\r\n\r\nThe major objective of this dinner/fashion show is to:-\r\n

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  • Increase awareness about breast cancer;
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  • De-stigmatize breast cancer and
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  • Raise funds to support breast cancer awareness programs.
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The fundraising component of the dinner will consist of:-

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1. Selling dinner tickets. These tickets are available at Shs.75,000/= per head, Shs.130,000/= per couple, Shs.200,000 per VIP card and a Corporate Table for 8 persons at Shs.1.5 million.\r\n2. Raffle Tickets sell at Shs.2,000/= each.

\r\nAll Tickets are available at:- Classic Uniforms Shop, Uganda House; Christ the King Church (Family Support Group Office); SwissGarde depot at Shoprite Building, Ben Kiwanuka Street and Uganda Womens’ Support Organisation (UWOCASO) Office at Plot 69, Kanjokya Street, Kamwokya.\r\n\r\nWe hereby appeal to the public to support the Breast Cancer cause by purchasing tickets and attending the Dinner. We further appeal to the media to publicize this function.\r\n\r\nSpeciosa Kabwegyere\r\nCHAIRPERSON\r\n\r\nSources:\r\n

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  • American Cancer Society 2007
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  • Department of surgery and Radiotherapy Mulago hospital
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