CAN Targets ‘Smoke-Free’ Childhood

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By Lynette Kozosi

WINDHOEK

Monday was World Cancer Day to raise awareness about this deadly disease and to talk about prevention.

World Cancer Day is marked globally on this day to enhance diagnosis.

The Cancer Association of Namibia (CAN) was founded 40 years ago by Dr A. B. May, then as part of the Cancer Association of South Africa, but the local branch became independent from South Africa in 1978.

This year, CAN and its supporters will have a simple message to
parents and the community – “I Love My Smoke-Free Childhood.”

It appeals to all people to provide a smoke-free environment for children.

Around 700 million children – almost half of the world’s children –
breathe air polluted by tobacco smoke, particularly at home.

The CEO of CAN Reinette Koegelenberg says that healthy habits established early in life have a significant impact in later years.

The environment in which they grow up, at home, at school and in the community would influence their behaviour later on in life.

“We will continue to advocate that second-hand smoke is a hazard for you and your family. There is no safe level of exposure to second-hand smoke; give your child a smoke-free childhood,” she said.

The highly attended event was also graced by the presence of the Minister of Health, Dr Richard Kamwi, and the Deputy Minister of Education Dr Becky Ndjoze-Ojo.

CAN President Deon Obbes said citizenry and governments forget that cancer is one of the leading causes of death globally. Up to 84 million people are expected to die from cancer in the next ten years if no
action is taken.

Obbes thanked the non-remunerated staff that have committed themselves to achieving the goals of CAN.

“Through proper and responsible management and utilization of its fund, CAN has continued to be one of the leading welfare organisations in Namibia. This has however only been achieved with the continued support from our partners,” he said.

Kurt Johannesson, the founding director of CAN, who inaugurated the extension to the CAN head office, expressed appreciation for the event saying that the successes achieved during his period (1984-2006), was not only his doing but a combined effort by all parties in the fight against cancer.

The Sanlam papsmear and breast examination mobile clinic will be in Gobabis from February 6 -7 and will proceed to Usakos on February18, Febrary19 in Karibib and on February 20, the clinic will be at Omaruru.

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