Today (February 4, 2021) marks World Cancer Day (WCD), a global cancer awareness initiative led by the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC). This year’s WCD theme of ‘I Am and I Will’ urges the global community to pledge their commitment to positive action towards creating a cancer-free future.
In 2018, an estimated 18 million new cases of cancer were diagnosed worldwide, resulting in over nine million deaths. These figures are expected to rise to nearly 30 million cases and over 16 million deaths by 2040. This trend is also anticipated in Australia, where one in two Australians will be diagnosed with cancer by the age of 85.
Since its establishment in 2000, WCD has recognised the unparalleled burden posed by cancer and other non-communicable diseases throughout the global community.
WCD works to raise awareness, improve education and spark individual, collective and government action. This united movement advocates for equal access to life-saving cancer treatment and the prevention of cancer deaths across all socio-economic groups.
Each year, hundreds of events and activities take place around the world, both physically and virtually, involving individuals, communities and organisations, which act as a powerful reminder of society’s critical role in reducing cancer burden.
VIVA! has worked extensively in the oncology arena, having partnered with patients and their families, advocacy groups, leading clinicians, pharmaceutical companies and healthcare providers. Through these years of experience, we have seen first-hand the devastation cancer can bring, and the critical role of continued research, improved access to treatment, and heightened community awareness on improving patient outcomes.
To take action this WCD, check out the 21 Days to Impact Challenge, which is encouraging individuals to make an impact through small but meaningful actions. For 2021, the proverbial “21 days to form a habit” is the motivation behind encouraging supporters to sign up to one of the five challenges to receive daily inspiration and practical guidance over 21 consecutive days.
So, the VIVA! team is making our own pledge as part of the 21 Days to Impact Challenge – we will speak up about cancer – and join the movement towards a cancer-free future.
Together, we can make a difference and strive to reduce the number of premature deaths from cancer and non-communicable diseases by one third by 2030.
For more information on WCD – visit worldcancerday.org