By Janet A Sesay
Sierra Leone’s leading mobile provider, Orange-Sierra Leone, in collaboration with Thinking Pink Breast Cancer Foundation, has, on Monday October 26th, 2020, carried out breast check for Orange staffs as part of World Breast Cancer Awareness month, which is being celebrated worldwide.
In his statement, Desmond Spaine, Corporate Social Responsibility and Foundation Manager, Orange Sierra Leone, said yesterday was declared as Breast Cancer day for several years Orange Sierra Leone have been working with Thinking Pink Breast Cancer Foundation. This will enable them to create a platform and opportunity for women who did not have the opportunity to go to the hospital to do their breast cancer check.
He said this opportunity was not only being limited to their staffs but they are also going to market places to meet the grass roots people and give them the opportunity to check their breasts.
He said Orange is also supporting the treatment of breast cancer victims to the extent of financing operations that are needed to be done on the victims.
Desmond continued that, because of the corona virus in the county, this time around they were doing an awareness campaign involving a cross country marathon to raise awareness about breast cancer.
“We will sensitize people about breast cancer and what they should do to prevent it,” Desmond Spaine said.
He said they were also going to educate people on how to check themselves to know if there is a lump on their breast and to make a report if being discovered.
Desmond said a lot of women are victims of breast cancer.
“They are seeking for help for them to undergo operations so that they will be healed and become healthy,” he informed.
Annie Wonnie- Katta, Public Relation and Corporate Affairs Head, Orange Sierra Leone, said the campaign was not only limited to women but men as well, “Because breast cancer does not only affect women.”
She said there is no awareness among men about breast cancer.
“We also need to take caution and to check their breasts,” she said.
According to her, the money, donated in cash to Thinking Pink Breast Cancer Foundation, is Le 75M plus other added items given for the campaign.
She said Orange Sierra Leone also provides cars for Thinking Pink Breast Cancer Foundation to do sensitization in the communities, as that is intended for men and women to be aware that their breasts should not be left in any kind of way.
“They need to be checked. If a lump is earlier detected in their breasts it will be treated and lives will be saved,” Annie Wonnie- Katta said.
She said, in as much as there is corona virus in the country, other sicknesses should not be forgotten. She stressed the move will complement the affairs of health for the people, adding that people should be aware that it is not only corona virus that can kill but other sicknesses, like breast cancer, can also kill.
The Chief Executive Officer for Thinking Pink Breast Cancer Foundation, Cremenda Pratt, thanked Orange Sierra Leone for their support.
“It is good when an office is taking care of their staffs, because a healthy work place is a positive and reproductive one,” she stressed.
She said breast cancer is the second leading cause of death globally and Sierra Leone is part of the globe. She said people have to learn to be breast aware by checking their breasts ten days every month after menstruation.
Madam Cremenda continued that women have to understand what to look for in their breast and investigate on their breast, because it is about early detection and if noticed quickly it will be cured, and if noticed late it will cause morbidity or death or the breast of the person will be cut because the cancer have gone far and has spread wide.
She appealed to the nation that early detection can save lives.
She said yesterday was celebrated all over the world, adding that women have died in numbers because of the silence that breast cancer has been. She said one person, one organization or one nation cannot fight the sick except everybody comes together as one.
She furthered that, during the checkup, if they find out that a person have breast cancer, it will be confidential and they will explain to the person the protocol involved, or all that is needed, about the treatment. She said, after that, the person can choose the best option whether to do the operation in Sierra Leone or abroad.
She said Sierra Leone is trying, but if a person needs proper treatment, that person has to go to Ghana or India.
She ended by detailing that the support given to them by Orange is not enough, but it will take them far. She pleaded with the government to help in the fight against this sickness.