As today, 4 February marks the World Cancer Day, Bracket Foundation and Bricon Foundation have collaborated to launch ‘B2 for Life’, an initiative aimed at giving succour to cancer patients in Nigeria.
Bracket Foundation is co-founded by the popular singing duo of Vast (Ozioko Nwachukwu) and Smash (Obumneme Ali), while Bricon Foundation on the other hand is co-founded by Abigail Simon-Hart and Dr Niyi Adekeye.
Both Abigail and Vast are cancer survivors and the foundations were set up in 2016 with a view of providing much needed funding for cancer patients in Nigeria.
Having both had their treatment in the UK, on coming back to Nigeria, they realised that instead of encouraging treatment outside the country, there is a need to build the necessary support structure within the country and to ensure that this care can be accessed by people who cannot afford to travel outside for treatment.
The ‘B2 for Life’ campaign flagged-off with a press conference hosted by the Wheatbaker, Ikoyi a few days ago to mark the release of an awareness video which highlights the plight of cancer patients in Nigeria and the need for everyone to contribute their widows’ mite to helping those struggling with the disease.
Nigeria continues to have the highest cancer death rate in Africa, with survival as low as 20 percent for most cancers and as low as 3 percent for blood cancer. “We need to change these statistics. We also need to address the issue of stigmatisation of cancer patients. There is no shame in having cancer and until more cancer patients come out to talk, many will continue to suffer in silence,” Vast said.
Abigail noted that “although awareness about the disease is increasing, resulting in more people coming forward for treatment, until we as a nation address the lack of personnel, equipment, treatment centres and improve affordability of care, people will continue to die prematurely from the disease”.
She added that all funds raised from the campaign will be used to fund patients’ treatment.