As COVID-19 grabs headlines and strains healthcare systems around the world, it can be easy to forget about the many other viruses and diseases the plague humanity, none more so than cancer.
To this day cancer remains one of the most deadly and insidious health conditions a person can develop. Caused when normal human cells mutate and begin to develop at an exceptional rate before developing into tumours, these defects within our bodies can kill even the strongest amongst us if left untreated.
You’ll be hard-pressed to find someone today in our modern world who hasn’t been touched by cancer in some way. Be it from knowing friends who have had it, watching your family members be diagnosed or even developing it yourself, it’s influence is almost universal.
Despite all of our technological advancements and medical knowledge, cancer remains a grim prospect for those diagnosed with it, if not a death sentence. Current treatments like chemotherapy and radiation treatment can be gruelling on the human body and require a strong will to endure.
All that being said, cancer can and has been beaten and every day new ways to treat, identify, prevent and one day, hopefully, cure its many forms are researched. Even in times of economic downturn, it’s still important to support those who are working to one day ensure no one’s life is cut short by this disease.
The month of April, typically, is Daffodil month for the Canadian Cancer Society (CCS) where Canadians are called upon to rally together to support those currently living with cancer and remember those who have lost their battle with it. However, COVID-19 has impacted every aspect of our lives and sadly the daffodil campaign is no exception.
“For the first time ever, to ensure the safety of those we serve, we are suspending all face-to-face fundraising activities. This will almost certainly result in a significant drop in donations, directly impacting Canadians with cancer,” the CCS said in a press statement.
When we talk about immunocompromised people being vulnerable to the virus, this is especially true amongst cancer patients undergoing treatment. The CSS said that caring for these patients is their top priority and that they’re calling on Canadians to still donate to the organization during Daffodil Month by helping to fund the Canadian Cancer Society COVID-19 Emergency fund to help support their helpline and online support programs all year round. You can do so by going to https://support.cancer.ca and clicking the donate button.
Those still wishing to spread the symbol of hope and renewal that is the daffodil can also create a digital daffodil on the CCS website by donating money. Once done you’ll be able to dedicate a daffodil in honour of someone you love and then be able to print or share the daffodil online.
If you want your money to stay in B.C. to help those fighting cancer within the province one need only look to the BC Cancer Foundation, the fundraising arm of BC Cancer. They believe that one in two British Columbians will face cancer once in their lifetimes, so they plan to help fuel the process of breaking down cancer, piece by piece, in labs and clinic.
BC Cancer says that with science and public support we can make a significant difference in the lives of cancer patients and universally improve the outcome of cancer. They invite anyone interested in donating to reach out to www.bccancerfoundation.com.
For a more specialized charity dedicated to tackling one form of cancer, such as prostate or breast cancer, there are dozens of smaller charities across Canada dedicated to specific areas in this fight. A comprehensive list of each organization can be found at https://www.canadahelps.org/en/cancer-charities-in-canada/ for more detailed information.
While belts may be tightened this year for obvious reasons it’s still important to remember that, however, this COVID-19 pandemic turns out, cancer will still be a challenge for us to overcome when the dust settles. So, this Daffodil Month, if you can spare a little cash, think of those with the most to lose.