- With cancer survival rates improving, there are more than 15 million cancer survivors in the United States alone.
- International Cancer Survivors Day celebrates the courage and determination of these individuals, while offering hope and support to cancer patients and their families the world over.
The International Cancer Survivors Day is observed on the first Sunday of June every year. Yet, many countries across the globe have their own events and awareness campaigns and their own 'National Cancer Survivors Day' themes and celebrations.
International Cancer Survivors Day 2017This year the International Cancer Survivors Day falls on 4th June. Worldwide, events are being planned to celebrate the occasion and to spread awareness and offer support and hope to countless newly diagnosed patients and their families. The day seeks to drive home the point that a diagnosis of cancer does not mean the end of the world.
Who Is a Cancer Survivor?The National Cancer Survivors Day Foundation defines a survivor as 'anyone living with a history of cancer - from the moment of diagnosis through the remainder of life'.
Why We Need a Cancer Survivors Day?Almost all of us would be familiar with a close relative, friend or family member being diagnosed with cancer.
The immediate reaction of one diagnosed with cancer is shock and disbelief - 'Why me?'. For the feeling to sink in, to accept the diagnosis and to come to terms with it will certainly not be easy for anyone. And in case of a childhood cancer, the impact is beyond imagination. It is every parents' worst nightmare.
The only reward that anybody would ask for, after going through all this and more, is to hear the magical words from their physician 'You are cured' or 'Your cancer is in remission.'
It is but fitting that we celebrate these brave men, women and children who have withstood the pain and discomfort and have literally been given a second lease of life. What better way to do this than dedicating a day every year in their honor and to salute them! They are truly heroes who have conquered cancer.
Importantly, this day also aims to create awareness and dispel myths and misconceptions about this deadly disease among the general population.
How Is International Cancer Survivors Day Celebrated?
- Many events and campaigns are organized on this day. It could be planned at the local park, shopping center or mall, at the local hospital or the neighborhood school.
- Whether it is a cancer survivor, a family member or a health professional, it is a common platform for people to come together and share their story and experience, and offer inspiration and hope to others who may be going through a similar struggle in their lives.
- One of the main goals is to educate the public about the importance of regular check-ups and how one should not to neglect any new or unusual symptoms.
- The message may be spread by means of inspirational talks by cancer survivors and their families, organizing short skits, distributing leaflets about the condition and through media outreach.
- Fundraisers may be organized by holding sales, and to donate the proceeds for cancer research, charity or treatment. Awareness walks or runs could be arranged to raise funds and educate.
- New support groups or clubs can be established within the community that would meet regularly and share their journey with others.
General Measures To Stay Healthy And Positive During and After Cancer TreatmentFollowing are some of the measures that could be adopted to remain healthy and stay positive during or after treatment. This will certainly help to improve the outcome of the disease.
- Follow a healthy, balanced diet. Include plenty of fruits and vegetables.
- Exercise as appropriate for your health condition.
- Pursue some enjoyable leisure activity to stay positive.
- Do not neglect your appearance. Put in an extra effort to look and feel good inspite of the cancer or its treatment.
- Join a support group and meet regularly to share and learn from other people's experiences.
- Be regular with your treatments and check-ups.
- Be aware of symptoms and signs of recurrence and seek medical attention immediately.
- Practice stress busting activities such as meditation or yoga.
- Give up smoking and alcohol.
- Avoid crowded places to minimize your chances of infection.
Cancer Support GroupsThe web address of some cancer support groups is provided below to help people get more information and support regarding cancer.
- About National Cancer Survivors Day - (http://www.ncsd.org/about-us)
- Cancer Survivors Day - (https://www.daysoftheyear.com/days/cancer-survivors-day/)
- National Cancer Survivors Day - (https://www.cancer.org/latest-news/special-coverage/national-cancer-survivors-day.html)