National Cancer Survivors Day Is about Everyone
The 28th annual Cancer Survivors Day is this Sunday, June 7th, 2015. And while this day is about cancer survivors, is also about all those who support people going through the trials of cancer. This includes loved ones, caregivers, healthcare providers, and anyone else who has helped a cancer survivor; in other words, National Cancer Survivors Day is about all of us.
According to the Canadian National Cancer Society, 41% of women and 46% of men will develop cancer in their lifetimes. In fact, every hour of every day, 21 Canadians will be diagnosed with cancer. With these numbers, it’s virtually impossible to go through life and not be touched by this disease. That’s why it’s so critical that we all take the day to recognize everyone who is living with, or who has lived with, cancer.
But, as most people who have experienced cancer will tell you, they couldn’t do it alone. All those surrounding people with cancer can make the difference between living with cancer and successfully beating it. These are the people who support those with cancer through providing healthcare, taking care of daily tasks, monetary support, enduring emotional support, or even just offering a listening ear. These people are just as incredible as those who are actively fighting the illness.
So, on this National Cancer Survivors Day take a moment to not only recognize all those who have battled or who are battling cancer but also take a moment to celebrate all those who help them in their fight.
How to Support Those Affected By Cancer
The Canadian Cancer Survivor Network is dedicated to:
- Empower collaborative action by cancer patients, families, and communities to identify and work to remove barriers to optimal patient care.
- Ensure that cancer survivors have access to education and action opportunities to have their voices heard in planning and implementing an optimal health care system.
- Educate the public and policy makers about the financial, emotional, and health costs of cancer and offer considered, positive ideas and recommendations to alleviate their effects.
- Research and encourage research on ways to alleviate barriers to optimal patient care and follow-up.
To support the Canadian Cancer Survivor Network’s mission, you can volunteer for the organization, join them while they work to improve the healthcare system as it deals with cancer, educate yourself about cancer, or support patient involvement in the healthcare system.
The other thing you can do for National Cancer Survivors Day is to work to reduce your own risk of developing cancer. You can do this in many ways including:
- Be a non-smoker and avoiding second-hand smoke.
- Maintain a healthy weight, be active, and eat well.
- Understand the dangers of drinking alcohol. The less you drink, the less your risk.
- Protect your skin from the sun and don’t use tanning beds.
- Get enough vitamin D.
For more information on reducing your risk of cancer, see the information on the Canadian Cancer Society’s website.
“This article was written by award-winning mental health writer and speaker, Natasha Tracy.”