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5,000 participants expected in Relay For Life cancer event

By Lonah Kibet | Published Tue, September 12th 2017 at 00:00, Updated September 12th 2017 at 16:31 GMT +3

More than 5,000 participants are expected to attend a Kenya Cancer Association event scheduled for the end of the month.

The association's Executive Director Deborah Olwal-Modi said the event would bring together various players, including patients, survivors, and care givers of various forms of cancer.

The 24-hour event seeks to promote community cancer awareness, advocate change, and reduce the burden of cancer locally.

"We come together to celebrate those who have made it, give hope to those going through treatment, and remember those who didn't make it," said Ms Modi.

Cancer is the third leading cause of death after infectious and cardiovascular diseases in the country.

Some 28,000 people die of cancer annually while about 40,000 new cases are reported over the same period, according to the Health Ministry.

The 24-hour event, Relay For Life (RFL), to be held at the Kenyatta International Convention Centre from September 30 at 8am to October 1, 2017 at 8am, will incorporate different activities, including walks, music, and awareness creation talks.

Relay For Life is the largest global cancer fundraising event done in more than 29 countries and is being organised in teams of between 10 to 15 participants in Kenya.

Modi said her oganisation found it prudent to have teams for moral support because of the time factor involved in the event.

"Individual participants are, however, also welcome to join," she noted.

Adults will be charged Sh1,200 while children between three to 12 years will pay Sh600, payable through Paybill no 288773 while the account name will be the participants name.

The association focuses on cancer education and awareness programmes, community engagement and patient support, including a feeding programme for patients undergoing chemotherapy and radiotherapy, distribution of NHIF cards, and women breast prosthesis, and advocacy to the counties.

After signing a three-year partnership with the association, Standard Group Plc acting Chief Executive Officer Orlando Lyomu said: "A lot of people are not aware of what it means to have cancer and how to deal with the myths surrounding the disease. The earlier the intervention the better the chances of success, hence the need to create awareness for early detection."

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