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Children Living with Cancer Foundation (CLWCF) Addresses the urgent need for childhood Cancer support in Nigeria

In a heartfelt plea for greater support, the Children Living with Cancer Foundation (CLWCF) has drawn attention to the staggering lack of assistance for childhood cancer treatment within Nigeria. The Foundation, dedicated to helping children battling cancer, emphasizes that cancer, as a genetic disorder, necessitates a comprehensive approach to care. They argue that prioritizing cancer treatment in the country could lead to the attainment of ten out of the seventeen Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The message was powerfully conveyed during CLWCF’s Inaugural Lecture, which centered on the theme: “Empowering the Youth Warrior: Nurturing Emotional Resilience During Childhood Cancer Treatment.” Speaking at the event, Professor Edamisan Temiye, a Haematology Oncologist at the Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH), expressed deep concern about the inadequate support for children suffering from cancer. He issued a heartfelt appeal to well-meaning Nigerians, urging them to invest in humanity.

Temiye highlighted the distressing symptoms that children with cancer endure, such as fatigue, nausea or vomiting, constipation, and sleep disturbances. He underscored the magnitude of treating a child with cancer, particularly in light of the financial strain it places on low and middle-class families. Many families find themselves burdened by overwhelming medical expenses, often resorting to debt. He emphasized the pressing need for society to rally behind these families, offering physical, financial, and social support.

Temiye shared some alarming statistics, revealing that roughly 0.04% of all cancer cases occur in children under the age of 14 worldwide. Despite its relatively low occurrence in comparison to adult cancers, childhood cancers tend to progress rapidly, posing a grave threat to young lives.

Dr. Nneka Nwobbi, the Founder of CLWCF, also joined the discussion, shedding light on the foundation’s future initiatives. She revealed plans to raise awareness about childhood cancer and establish a childhood cancer registry. Among the upcoming events is an art exhibition scheduled for September 24th, featuring artwork created by children both within and outside the hospital ward. Earlier this August, the foundation conducted an art workshop over two weeks, generating a collection of inspiring artworks. Additionally, CLWCF intends to organize a work-a-thon event, with participants journeying from LUTH to the stadium and back.

One of the most significant developments on the horizon is the establishment of a childhood cancer registry, a collaborative effort involving LUTH and LASUTH. The foundation is actively seeking sponsors to facilitate the procurement of essential equipment for collecting crucial data on cancer cases among children.

As CLWCF champions the cause of childhood cancer support and awareness, their dedicated efforts underscore the urgent need for comprehensive care and assistance for young cancer warriors in Nigeria.

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