The Breast Cancer Foundation of Egypt (BCFE) organized the seventh annual awareness event entitled “Run for Cure” on Friday, 27th of March, 2009 at the Gezira Sporting Club. The main aim of the event is to raise awareness to the early detection regarding this dangerous life threatening disease.
The day started with a women and family run, a full entertainment program followed by an open session on breast cancer awareness and early detection, hosted by Safaa El Kholy, chaired by Dr. Mohamed Shalaan, Chairman of BCFE and endorsed by screen legend Nelly, Khaled Abol Naga as well as young actress Basma. Among the attendees were US Ambassador to Egypt Margaret Scobey and many other key figures of society.
Among the attendees is may be the most important ambassador of faith, Sahar Ali, a breast cancer survivor who is sharing her experience to give hope to other women.
How did you survive breast cancer?
Well, I had to remove my breasts, and the cancer came back to haunt me again but I survived once more and I was treated with hormones. A remedy I was given as well was Aloe Vera, which worked to my surprise.
How could a mother prepare her kids for the news of having with breast cancer?
Mothers should be very honest with their kids from the start. A mother must tell them everything about her situation and convince them that cancer doesn’t always mean death. When I was diagnosed with breast cancer, one of my children was at preparatory school and the other at high school and they were ready enough to accept the fact. I’m very lucky that my children are willing to understand and be supportive and I’m the one who explained everything to them from the start.
How could women be emotionally prepared for breast cancer?
Breast cancer requires lots of encouragement and strength. You should defeat the monster and not let it defeat you. We had an organization called “Support Group” for women who suffer from breast cancer and we took a course on how to support women who suffer and also support ourselves. You could never imagine how relieved people are when they feel that they aren’t alone. When a recently diagnosed woman meets other women, she gets to see a different perspective and a future.
Some women who suffer from breast cancer quit their love for life and stop planning for their future, how do you see that?
Women must never do that. A woman must plan and not quit planning for her life. She must evaluate her relationship with God and stick to her faith. She must stop the sequence of sacrifices she always does for the people around her and must consider herself in terms of what she wants to accomplish and what makes her happy. You won’t believe that I started a new, cheerful life after breast cancer, but that’s really what happened. I stopped to wake up my children for school and I was surprised that they did that themselves despite their attitude before and many surprises followed as the children got so much independent and that is a positive result I got from cancer. Egyptian women always postpone their plans and their families come first but that’s not always healthy. Your family will be shocked at first from the attitude but they’ll get used to it and they’ll love the fact that you are happily coping.
Under the patronage of Dr. Ahmed El Said, president of the Gezira Club, the Breast Cancer Foundation of Egypt offers breast health examination to club members and employees from 31st of March to 3rd of April 2009. BCFE offers free examination and discounted mammograms.