Pink Caravan Ride to be held from March 16 to 25

The campaign spread awareness about the significance of early detection and self-examination of breast cancer, and succeeded in dispelling myths surrounding the disease.

By Afkar Abdullah/principal Correspondent

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Published: Thu 26 Feb 2015, 11:48 PM

Last updated: Thu 25 Jun 2015, 10:29 PM

Dr Sawsan Al Madhi explaining the clinic track for this year’s Pink Caravan Ride at a Press conference at the American University of Sharjah  on Wednesday. — Supplied photo

Sharjah - The fifth annual Pink Caravan Ride, which promotes community awareness about the importance of early detection of breast cancer, will take place from March 16 to 25, its organisers, Friends of Cancer Patients (FoCP), announced on Wednesday. The annual horseback ride will be held under the theme #Pink Thank You.

“(The theme is) ... an expression of our deepest gratitude and appreciation towards everyone who contributed over the past years in achieving part of the Pink Caravan’s objectives,” said Ameera BinKaram, president of the board of trustees, founding member of the FoCP and chairperson of the Higher Steering Committee of the Pink Caravan Ride.

BinKaram said the campaign spread awareness about the significance of early detection and self-examination of breast cancer, and succeeded in dispelling myths surrounding the disease, thanks to the generous patronage of His Highness Dr Shaikh Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Member of the Supreme Council and Ruler of Sharjah. The campaign’s achievements, she said, would not have been possible without the support and follow-up by Shaikha Jawaher bint Mohammed Al Qasimi, wife of Shaikh Sultan and founder and Royal Patron of the FoCP.

She said Shaikha Jawaher, who is also the International Ambassador of the World Cancer Declaration for Union for International Cancer Control (UICC) as well as International Ambassador for Childhood Cancer for UICC, has provided every possible means of support to cancer patients — particularly those with breast cancer — out of her strong faith in the need to ensure and preserve human health and safety.

“We look forward this year to engage non-government health and social organisations in our efforts to work together, addressing the issue of breast cancer by encouraging more women and men in the UAE to undergo early detection examinations regularly, in addition to providing the necessary medical and psychological care for patients with breast cancer. We need to uphold a united message for spreading awareness about cancer through traditional means such as lectures, educational programmes, events, media, and social networking sites, as well as by providing mammogram screenings, the establishment of a UAE National Cancer Registry, improvement of examination standards at government and private medical institutions, and reducing cancer incidence and its impacts on the UAE society.”

 Furthering a cause

She said the Pink Caravan has over the past few years offered early detection breast cancer screenings to nearly 29,000 women and men across the UAE. “The Pink Caravan provides intensive support and treatment for 30 patients with breast cancer annually, at a total cost of Dh7.5 million. It was able to expand the FoCP voluntary team to include more than 300 persons, institutions and companies at present, alongside doctors, nurses, students and families of cancer patients from various nationalities, who took it upon themselves to help and support cancer patients.

 The route

Badr Al Juaidi, head of the Pink Caravan’s logistic services, said the 10-day ride will begin at 12.45pm on March 16 from the Sharjah Equestrian and Racing Club.

The caravan will head to Al Dhaid, Masafi, Fujairah, Khor Fakkan, Ras Al Khaimah, Umm Al Quwain, Ajman, Al Qasba in Sharjah, Palm Dubai, Dubai Downtown-Burj Khalifa, Burj Al Arab and Corniche Park in Abu Dhabi, before culminating at Galleria on March 25.

Dr Sawsan Al Madhi, secretary-general of FoCP and head of Pink Caravan’s medical committee, said: “Mobile clinics will work throughout the 10-day ride, from 7am-9pm, in select locations in each emirate.”

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