Pink Caravan Ride 2017

Pink Caravan set for seventh edition across UAE Filed on February 7, 2017
Pink Caravan set for seventh edition across UAE

(Photo by M.Sajjad)

One of the highlights of this year's Pink Caravan is the inauguration of a fixed medical clinic

The Pink Caravan is all set for its seventh edition to carry out a 10-day cancer awareness campaign across the country's seven emirates.

With the theme '7 Years for 7 Emirates," this year's ride "strongly upholds the 'spirit of giving', as it boldly continues with its mission to promote breast cancer awareness, spread the importance of early detection and organise free screenings across the UAE, regardless of age, sex or nationality," Sharjah-based Friends of Cancer Patients (FoCP), organisers of the Pink Caravan, announced at a press conference on Tuesday.

One of the highlights of this year's Pink Caravan, from March 7-17, is the inauguration of a fixed medical clinic in each of the seven emirates.

"For the first time, the Pink Caravan Ride will see the inauguration of seven stationed clinics in the seven emirates," announced Reem BinKaram, chairperson of the Higher Organising Committee of the Pink Caravan Ride. "Medical teams will receive people who want to undergo screenings. These clinics will be stationed at Al Majaz Waterfront in Sharjah; Dubai City Walk; Abu Dhabi Corniche; Ajman Corniche; Al Hamra Mall in Ras Al Khaimah; Al Khazzan Healthcare Clinic in Umm Al Quwain; and Al Alsaseel Health Center in Fujairah."

The annual Pink Caravan Ride is held under the patronage of Sheikha Jawaher Al Qasimi, wife of His Highness Dr Sheikh Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, founder and royal patron of FoCP, International Ambassador for the World Cancer Declaration of the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC) and International Ambassador for Childhood Cancer for UICC.

Organisers said they were able to raise around Dh8m in various activities last year.

Hind Al Janahi, an Emirati, who is now on her fifth ride with the caravan said: "As a woman, I would to like to help spread cancer awareness among the residents in the UAE. Cancer is curable but we urge people to go for regular check-ups - at least once a year or every six months. Early detection is very important. According to studies there is a 98 per cent recovery chance of breast cancer if detected early, that's why we are offering free mobile check ups for residents throughout the caravan. As an Emirati, I want to see my country free of cancer," added Al Hanahi.

For Jordanian expat Sarah Hammoudeh, the Pink Caravan has become a unique family tradition. "Me, my sister and two brothers have joined the caravan since its inception in 2011. Our family is in the medical field and we all love horses. Good thing about this is that both our passions (horse-riding and providing medical help) are realised because of the Pink Caravan. The caravan is also growing every year and we are reaching more people especially in rural areas," Hammoudeh added.

Busting the myth that men are 'safe' from breast cancer is the primary reason that Egyptian expat Nader Nassar has been part of the Pink Caravan since 20112. As one of the few male riders, Nassar said: "Our male population should be aware that they are from breast cancer that's why joining the Pink Caravan is my unique way of calling their attention to this medical fact."

Meanwhile, at the Press conference, FoCP also praised the pioneering efforts of the late Ameera BinKaram, former chairperson of the Pink Caravan Organising Committee. "She (Ameera) was the one who took the Pink Caravan from being a mere idea to making it an internationally recognised cancer awareness campaign," said Mohamed Khalaf, manager of Sharjah TV and Radio

"Despite dear Ameera's passing, we will continue this march," he added.

The pink route

March 7: The ride will begin at 10am from the Sharjah Equestrian and Racing Club, and to stop at Masafi Hospital at 6.50pm

March 8: From Fujairah Men's Higher College of Technology to end at the Oceanic Hotel in Khorfakkan

March 9: From Dibba Al Fujairah Beach Park at 9.30am to return to the starting point at 4.20pm

March 10: A day of rest for the riders

March 11: From Saqr Hospital in Ras Al Khaimah at 9.30am, to arrive Beach Road at 3.30pm

March 12: From Umm Al Quwain Hospital at 9.30am to Salt Restaurant in Ajman at 5.20pm

March 13: From Kempinski Hotel Ajman at 9.30am to Al Majaz Waterfront at 4pm

March 14: From Ministry of Health and Prevention in Dubai at 10am to Mohammed Bin Rashid Space Centre at 3.45pm

March 15: From City Walk, Dubai, at 9.30am to Kite Beach in Jumeirah at 4.30pm

March 16: From Abu Dhabi's Yas Island at 10am, to Executive Council HQ at 1.30pm

March 17: From Ikea Store on Yas Island at 1.30pm to reach Zayed Sports City.

Angel Tesorero

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