Ignorance about, and misconceptions and myths surrounding cancer have been the main causative factors leading to such a high incidence of cancers in our part of the world. Keeping this in mind FOM Chennai had planned to hold a 2 kilometer “Cancer Awareness Walk” that would be the ideal way to kickstart the 5th Annual FOM All India Meet.
This walk was scheduled for the morning before the Annual Meet on May 23, 2010. Max India , courtesy the co operation of our friends in Point Blank worked on creating banners and placards that would dispel these very myths and misconceptions. Sourcing accurate and accepted literature and messages from the Adayar Cancer Institute, Chennai, we created leaflets and placards and this inspirational walk. The Walk was to take place at Marina beach, which, at 13 kilometers, is the second longest beach in the world. What better a place to start the walk than by the monumental statue of Mahatma Gandhi, Bapu; the Father of our Nation and an inspiration to millions.
The one thing that kept us on the edge of our seats was the permission from the local Police which, to our relief, came a mere 10 hours before the walk was to start!
And once the day dawned there was no stopping the 200 plus strong group that gathered there in the early hours of dawn.
Our GIPAP physicians from Chennai and FOM from across India were invited to
take part. Our Chief Guest for the occasion was Mr.Pandiyarajan, a renowned film comedian from the southern part of India.
FOM Volunteers from all the cities joined in and our Physicians, a few FOM Volunteers and Ms.Lucy Hickinbotham from Novartis shared a few words with everyone congregated before we started the walk. It was amazing to see everyone in their white FOM T-Shirts, hand in hand walking on the beach, handing out leaflets on cancer awareness, holding placards and banners. I can confidently say that we achieved what we set out to do, we could see it all in the faces of the passersby. It was truly a fitting beginning to the event christened “ Towards a New Dawn“
Reported by Gita Baratam