Shillong: The month of October is celebrated worldwide as Breast Cancer Awareness Month with National Mammographic Day falling on October 18. To commemorate this and to create awareness and sensitivity about this disease that has become the most common type of cancer in women, Martin Luther Christian University organized a special programme entitled “Walk for Women’s Health” in collaboration with Rotary Club of Orchid City, Shillong.
The programme started with a walk flagged off by Dr Gordon Rangad, the chief guest of the programme who then joined the Vice-Chancellor of MLCU, the president and office-bearers of the Rotary Club of Orchid City, Shillong, the invitees of the event and the students and faculty of the Department of Allied Health Sciences, Social Work and Music of MLCU in the walk from Pohkseh to MLCU campus, Nongrah. The participants on the walk carried placards, shouted slogans and distributed pamphlets about breast cancer to the people.
This was followed by a concluding programme at MLCU campus chaired by Pradeep Pillai, president, Rotary Club of Orchid City, Shillong. In the programme, the Department of Allied Health Sciences presented the various achievements of the joint programme on breast cancer by MLCU and Rotary Club of Orchid City, Shillong that was initiated by an MoU signed in April, 2019.
The joint programme was carried out in Thadnongiaw, Nongspung and Mawpadang and amongst the students of the university. The programme was successful in empowering key persons in becoming ambassadors who were trained on carrying out initial tests and examinations to identify symptoms of breast cancer.
The walk, in which 200 volunteers participated, was a culmination of these various community initiatives that benefitted more than 31 persons directly and about 3,000 members of the community indirectly.
A scientific talk was also delivered by Dr Judita Syiemlieh in which she emphasised that proper knowledge about the disease and its early diagnosis can lead to an attainment of up to 99 per cent chance of cure of breast cancer. She also talked broadly about the treatment facilities available in Civil Hospital, Shillong.
Testimonies were also delivered by two breast cancer survivors who stated that proper follow-up of treatment can lead to a complete cure from breast cancer. They also encouraged everyone to speak up about this disease and to not let stigma or embarrassment hinder them from coming forward.
Dr Gordon, in his speech, emphasised that support is the best tool to fight this disease as patients who enjoy a good support from their loved ones have a higher chance of survival.