In a way to commemorate International Childhood Cancer Day, The MTN Uganda Foundation on Friday 15th February donated UGX 15million towards the purchase of Cancer Drugs for Lacor Hospital in Gulu.
The UGX 15 million was donated towards the purchase of children’s Anti-Cancer drugs to the St. Mary’s Hospital Lacor. St. Mary’s Hospital Lacor is a nonprofit hospital located 6km from Gulu.
“As MTN Uganda, we realise and understand the importance of continued support towards the communities where we operate. The fight against cancer especially among children, who are the most vulnerable group among us, is a noble one and is one that we are committed to support,” said Mazen Mrouè, CEO, MTN Uganda.
Global statistics revealed that, each year, more than 160,000 children worldwide are diagnosed with cancer, and about 90,000 die from the disease. In Uganda over 1,500 children are diagnosed with cancer annually while cancer cases continue to grow from 15,000 in 2010 to over 33,000 currently.
Dr. Cyprian Opira The Executive Director of Lacor Hospital said, “Cancer treatment especially in children is one area that Lacor Hospital focuses on. This is because of the high cost of treatment which is often not affordable by most of our patients. We thank the MTN Uganda Foundation for their contribution of UShs. 15 million that will go towards the treatment of the most serious cases.”
Lacor Hospital has focused on treating Lymphorma and cancer of the kidney in children. There are approximately 150 new cases reported in a year and yet curable if treatment is started early.
According to the Uganda Cancer Institute, only 15% of children with cancer countrywide are diagnosed in time because of ignorance and poor training. This has led to reporting of the cancers at a late stage of infection leading to deaths which could have otherwise been stopped. There is therefore a need to increase the sensitisation of the public through an elaborate awareness campaign.
World Cancer Day is marked on February 4th to raise awareness of cancer and to encourage its prevention, detection, and treatment. This Day was founded by the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC) to support the goals of the World Cancer Declaration, written in 2008. The primary goal of the World Cancer Day is to significantly reduce death and illness caused by cancer by 2020.
World Cancer Day 2013 (4 February 2013) focused on Target 5 of the World Cancer Declaration: Dispel damaging myths and misconceptions about cancer, under the tagline “Cancer – Did you know?”. World Cancer Day is a chance to raise collective voices in the name of improving general knowledge around cancer and dismissing misconceptions about the disease.
“We believe that through this contribution, St Mary’s Hospital Lacor, which currently offers free and highly subsidised Children Cancer treatment will be able to offer this service to more children and families affected by cancer and we call on more corporate entities to support the fight against Cancer in Uganda,” Mroué said.
The MTN Uganda Foundation is a non-profit legal entity that was inaugurated in July 2007 as a vehicle through which MTN Uganda implements its’ Corporate Social Investments (CSI). The Foundation strives to improve the quality of life in communities where MTN Uganda operates in a sustainable way. Since its launch, the MTN Foundation has supported a number of initiatives in the areas of Education, Health, Arts and Culture, Environment, Community Development and Low cost housing.
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