From the initial diagnosis to the first day of chemotherapy, the journey of a cancer patient is wrought up with physical and psychological weariness, and while a large number of cancer cases are now treatable, such a journey subjects the patient and their family to an emotional roller coaster whatever their fate ends up being. With a no clear cancer control plan set in stone, Jordan struggles with the disease as the second leading cause of death in the nation.
In the roughest of times, a cancer burden is indeed a heavy one to carry. Yet, the Jordanian people have proven from time and time again to be continuously resilient people no matter the circumstances they face. Through singular and communal initiatives by civil society members and with the support of the private and government sectors, such a cancer divide has slowly been mending in the hopes of finding hope in the darkest and roughest of places.
Every year, organizations around the globe get together under the singular initiative of World Cancer Day to raise awareness of cancer and encourage its prevention, detection, and treatment. King Hussein Cancer Center, a substantial regional stakeholder, is inviting everyone to lead on in their creative way to prevent cancer through their latest campaign “Up to the Challenge” starting on 4/2/2019 till 28/2/2019. The campaign encourages participants to be creative in implementing an activity of their choice; be it physical, healthy diets, smoke-free initiatives, and declaring your support under the hashtag of قد_التحدي#. As of February 4, 2019, it is up to the participants’ to be up to the challenge by either sharing their cancer prevention activities under the previously mentioned hashtag, spread the word by changing their profile pictures, cover photos and most importantly booking appointments for early detection or enrolling themselves or their loved ones in KHCC’s Cancer Care Program.
“Hemmetna,” another initiative launched exclusively by civil society members is an awareness and fundraising campaign that has set its first objective to rehabilitate the Oncology Department at Al Bashir Hospital, the biggest governmental hospital in Amman as its first and foremost objective. While the cost of such a project is estimated at a considerable price of JD 1.5 million, the campaign since launching in August 2018, has till now garnered a tremendous 30% of the whole cost to fund the project and will subsequently move to different projects in the hopes of building a sustainable system to combat the long-standing epidemic of cancer in Jordan.
Up To The Challenge and Hemmetna are more than campaigns. They are a firm step in the long journey against the worldwide cancer pandemic. They are a collective raise of voice to take action against the spread of cancer through simple everyday actions. They are a loving stand next to those who currently suffer, and one more tear wiped against the faces of parents who have lost their children to the fate of cancer.