Eighty per cent of donations made to SCCS are used for all programmes and services whilst the remaining 20 per cent is allocated to cover administration and fund-raising cost.
Hee expresss her gratitude for the support from the community in the whole of Sarawak, following the success of this year’s campaign which saw them hitting the RM1.5-million target.
MIRI: Raising a child has never been easy and learning that your child is diagnosed with cancer is the last thing any parent could have imagined.
Living in a society where the acknowledgement and awareness on paediatric cancer amongst the local community is still very low; many are said to unable to accept the reality of childhood cancer.
“One child is diagnosed with cancer every five days in the state and the growing number has become worrying. However, despite over and over again that we’d shared the statistic with the local community, we note that the awareness level has not been able to match our expectation and that too has become our worry,” Sarawak Children’s Cancer Society (SCCS) president Jocelyn Hee told thesundaypost.
Hence, Hee said she hopes this year’s Gold Ribbon Week (GRW) is able to draw the attention of the general public towards childhood cancer and the types of cancer afflicting these young souls.
Ignorance is not bliss
‘Cancer has nothing to do with me or my children’ is generally the common thought in the local community here and SCCS aims to change that through dissemination of information and activities such as the annual Colour Rush charity run, Go Bald campaign, Golden Child Camp and Gold Ribbon Week.
“Until today, the cause of many childhood cancers remains unknown. The symptoms of each cancer could be varied according to the type and individual, therefore we hope through education of the signs and symptoms of paediatric/ childhood cancer, cases like these can be diagnosed earlier.”
The programs and activities done by SCCS all year long, she reiterated, do not merely centre on raising money; these are the efforts the society wishes to focus on to reach out and educate the public on basic knowledge of childhood cancer.
To give a clearer picture, Hee added that society has taken a step forward by inviting medical staff from government hospitals to be with the society at events such as Gold Ribbon Week, to answer inquiries by curious members of the public.
“To us, there is nothing like unspoken taboo. We are open to any inquiry relating to childhood cancer and to avoid any mistake, we would invite medical staff who can provide accurate information.”
Hee and volunteers at last year’s Gold Ribbon Week campaign.
Gold Ribbon Week
Gold Ribbon Week (GRW) is a week-long awareness roadshow to raise awareness about childhood cancer and the services provided by the society to help families with children battling cancer in Sarawak.
The event will be held in Kuching from Sept 5-11 at Vivacity Megamall and in Miri from Sept 16-18 at Permaisuri Imperial City Mall.
During the roadshow, the public can learn more about the common types of childhood cancer, signs and symptoms, and also have the opportunity to query medical staff on childhood cancer.
In addition, staff and volunteers of the SCCS will be present to share their experiences, and answer queries about the society. People who are interested can also find out more on volunteering opportunities at SCCS.
Monthly Donation Programme
The society’s Go Bald campaign which was first launched in 2009, is known as the largest and the first head-shaving charity event in the country.
It has since then become the signature fundraiser for the society to raise funds for SCCS to cover expenses from care of cancer patients and their families, the advancement of research and the development of public education surrounding the prevention, control, diagnosis and treatment of childhood cancer.
“Despite the down-trending economy, we are thankful for the support from the community in the whole of Sarawak, following the success of this year’s campaign which saw us achieve the RM1.5-million target.”
Even so, Hee revealed that the society is looking for a new alternative to achieve their objectives – raising funds and educating the general public; and the ‘Monthly Donation Program’ which will be launch at the GRW events, is the new project by SCCS.
“People may feel overwhelmed with the huge sums needed to be raised each year. The truth is, the society relies on the generosity of the public to provide funds and thereafter, provide monetary assistance to patients and families in dire financial need including monthly financial subsidies, reimbursement, bereavement assistance and need-based provision of medical subsidies.”
In short, 80 per cent of donations made to SCCS are used for all sorts of programmes and services whilst the remaining 20 percent is allocated to cover all administration and fund-raising cost.
The monthly donation programme is an alternative way, enabling members of the public to donate a small amount of money, from as little as RM1 a day.
“Our main objective is to enable supportive public members of the who wish to donate in small monetary contribution, to provide relief and care for patients stricken with childhood cancer here.”
To find out more about this event or how you can help, please visit the Sarawak Children’s Cancer Society Facebook page or contact Jocelyn at 019-8841161.
Colour Rush, is a 5km charity run held in commemoration of international childhood cancer day on Feb 15.