Faces of Cancer and The Saint Lucia Cancer Society are in receipt of the proceeds from the 2022 ‘Walk For The Cure’ fundraising drive.
On Monday March 6th representatives of the Faces of Cancer and the St. Lucia Cancer Society, accepted a combined total of XCD45,000 from Mr. Nigel Ollivierre, Country Manager of CIBC FirstCaribbean. This amount represents a little over 100% increase on the 2021 amount when the COVID 19 Pandemic greatly impacted the annual walk. Over the past eleven years, Walk For the Cure has become a reliable injection of funds to support the work of these organisations.
In accepting the cheque, Mrs. Alison Chester, President of the St. Lucia Cancer Society said that reliable funding facilitates are more than support to clients.
“Our greatest contribution to the fight against cancer is our data collection, without which we cannot be a part of the conversation. Data helps us determine the number of cases locally, the number of the population at risk, the most common types of cancer, and to be able to seek or request funding”, Mrs. Chester said.
According to Mrs. Chester, the collection of data is critical for the establishment of a National Cancer Registry. Currently the association is advocating for “workable guidelines, systems and processes, for people who are unaware of the critical importance of getting tested, for those who do not have the means to do what is needed, and those in need of treatment to receive this treatment in a timely manner”.
The cost of cancer care includes those associated with CT scans, surgery, chemotherapy, immunotherapy, hormonal therapy, radiation, PET scans, special blood tests or tissue tests and in many instances, reconstructive/plastic surgery, Mrs. Chester elaborated.
In his remarks, local partners and walkers came in for commendation and thanks from Mr. Olivierre. “Eleven years is fair indicator of the strength of a partnership. After the impact of the pandemic on our momentum last year, $45,000 this is a toast to the partnership with our walk regulars and corporate supporters,” Mr. Ollivierre said; while expressing the hope that the walk will “reach and surpass the performance of previous years”.
To date, Walk For The Cure has generated an annual average in Saint Lucia of about $40,000 and in 2019, the Saint Lucia Walk raised $58,000. To date 2016 has recorded the best performance with some $75,000 being generated that year.
Walk For The Cure is the FirstCaribbean ComTrust Foundation’s flagship activity and one of the Caribbean’s largest cancer fundraising and educational initiatives raising over USD$4 million across the region over the past decade.