International Childhood Cancer Awareness Day

JOINT MEDIA STATEMENT

To: Editors & Health Journalists
Issued by: National Department of Health
Date: Thursday, 15 February 2024

International Childhood Cancer Awareness Day – 15 February

Pretoria: The National Department of Health (NDoH) urges health care workers and communities to be aware of the SILUAN warning signs for childhood cancer. This will allow for early detection and effective management of childhood cancers which will result in better outcomes.

Approximately 400 000 children and adolescents are diagnosed with cancer annually. The South African children’s Tumour Registry reports 1000 new children and adolescents with cancer annually,  but many are missed and do not receive treatment.

Parents, educators, general practitioners and paediatricians play a crucial role in early detection of childhood cancers. It is important to know the early signs of childhood cancers which include a white spot in the eye or sudden blindness; lump on any place on the body mostly in the abdomen, neck and limbs; unexplained fever or weight loss; aching bones and easy fractures; and a change in behaviour, gait, headaches and regression in milestones.

The country joins the global community to commemorate International Childhood Cancer Day to raise awareness about childhood cancers and to express support for children and adolescents living with cancer, the survivors, and their families. The common childhood cancers in South Africa are leukaemia, lymphoma, brain tumours, eye and kidney tumours.

The International Childhood Cancer Day is observed on the 15th of February annually to highlight the vital role of community engagement and support in addressing the complexities associated with childhood and adolescent cancer.

The NDoH in collaboration with the South African Association of Paediatric Haematology of Oncology (SAAPHO), WHO and CHOC Childhood Cancer Foundation SA acknowledge and commend the significant contributions made towards the care of children and adolescents with cancer by various stakeholders, including the medical community, civil society, parent groups, non-governmental organisations and individual members of our society.

Hedley Lewis, CHOC CEO has said, “these contributions provide crucial support to children and adolescents with cancer, survivors, and their families. Cancer impacts negatively on siblings and other family members. The challenges faced by these families extend beyond medical treatment, encompassing emotional, physical and social, financial, educational, and long-term health effects”.

According to Professor Gita Naidu, chair of South African Association of Paediatric Haematology Oncology, there is a need to raise primary health care and community

awareness of the SILUAN Early Warning Signs of childhood cancers especially amongst parents, caregivers and educators.

Early diagnosis and swift referral to treating centres is imperative to improve the outcomes of this dreaded disease. Childhood cancer is curable, but only if diagnosed and treated timeously”. Cancer care includes early diagnosis, the availability of diagnostics and therapeutics, supportive, long-term follow-up, quality of life and palliative care.

The WHO Global Initiative for Childhood Cancer (GICC) was launched in September 2018 with the aim of improving the global overall survival to 60% by 2030 and to allow these children and adolescents to live and die without pain and suffering. South Africa remains committed to focusing on childhood cancer and is aligned with the WHO-GICC goals.

SAAPHO and CHOC are hosting SIOP Africa in Johannesburg from 4-8 June 2024, and this will create an opportunity to share knowledge, foster collaborate, engage with stakeholders nationally, on the continent and globally with the aim of improving the lives of children and adolescents with cancer.

Flip Flop Day – Friday, 23 February 2024

The inconceivable diagnosis of childhood cancer should not be a challenge that any parent should ever have to face. But unfortunately, it is a reality that many families across South Africa have had to come to terms with on a daily basis. These families are facing a reality like no other, one that no one should have to face however, these brave children and teenagers, along with their families never have to stand alone.

Owami, a brave 6-year-old boy was diagnosed with leukaemia last year. His parents were devastated when they heard the news but found solace in the fact that they weren’t alone. CHOC Childhood Cancer Foundation South Africa provided them with the emotional and practical support they needed to get through this difficult time. From the moment they received the diagnosis, CHOC was there to offer a helping hand, providing them with essential CHOC Carebags, nutritional food support, transport assistance, psychosocial support and even accommodation when they needed it most.

Owami’s parents were amazed by the level of care and support they received from CHOC. They felt like they were part of a family, and that made all the difference. Owami is still going through the childhood cancer journey, but he’s not alone. CHOC is there every step of the way, providing him with the support he needs to keep going.

Annually Flippie arrives in February, and we need to encourage South Africans to wear their flip flops, make a donation by purchasing a Flip Flop Day sticker for R10 and wear your sticker on Flip Flop Day which is Friday, 23rd February 2024. This will help support children like Owami and their families. So, let’s show our support for these brave children and teenagers and wear our soles with pride!

Flippie, South Africa’s favourite and most well-loved CHOC SOLE-dier has a serious passion for compassion and has stepped up to lead the movement to get everyone from the seaside to the city – to show their support for these fearless children and teenagers.

CHOC Childhood Cancer Foundation South Africa is a registered and internationally recognised Non-Profit Organisation (NPO) whose aim is to provide life-changing and all-embracing support programmes to both the child or teenager and their families once a diagnosis has been given. Our services provide emotional support through the cancer journey, as well as palliative, end-of-life care and bereavement support. We also offer practical support for patients and families, including essential CHOC Carebags, nutritional food support, bereavement support, accommodation, transport to and from treatments, and our Educational and Awareness Programme on the Siluan Early Warning Signs of Childhood Cancer.

Hedley Lewis, CHOC CEO, emphasises the impact of just one sticker, stating, “Your donation will make a significant difference in the lives of these young ones and their families. By contributing just R10, you assist CHOC in funding their Core Programmes and extend hope, solidarity, and support to those diagnosed with childhood cancer”. Hedley further highlights, “At any one time, CHOC can have around 1500 children and teenagers in our care. Show your heart by wearing your soles! From classrooms to boardrooms, support us to support them for only R10.”

Flip Flop Day is now in its 5th year! Join us on Friday, 23rd February for Flip Flop Day 2024. Partnered for greatness, you can get your sticker for only R10 at your nearest PNA, Tekkie Town, or by visiting www.choc.org.za alternatively popping into your nearest CHOC Regional Office.

Are you ready to join in? Let’s flip for CHOC!
#FlipFlopDay
#FlipFlopDay2024

Make a Difference This Festive Season

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CHOC Childhood Cancer Foundation SA will be closed from the 22nd of December to the 1st of January 2024Email not displaying correctly?
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Reflecting on 2023: A Year of Endless Opportunities and Inspirations

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CHOC CEO, Hedley Lewis

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In 2023, I discovered boundless opportunities for inspiration. The resilience exhibited by our patients and their families became a wellspring of motivation. Each day, the dedication of hospital executives, peadiatric oncologists, and our multidisciplinary team in their pursuit of the life-saving mission left me in awe.

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Amidst economic challenges, our donors demonstrated unwavering commitment, delving deep to provide crucial support. My heart swelled with gratitude for the tireless efforts of volunteers at the Board level, the compassionate contributions from The CHOC Cows, and the invaluable support from hospital volunteers who stood steadfastly by our side, enriching our collective capacity. Thank you to our CHOC Staff who make a difference every day and continue to fulfill their roles with incredible passion!

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To every individual who exceeded expectations, inspiring me and making an incredible difference in 2023, I extend heartfelt thanks on behalf of the entire CHOC family.
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​​​​​​​​​Your dedication has been the heartbeat of our shared mission.
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​​​​​​​​​Hedley Lewis
​​​​​​​​​CHOC Childhood Cancer Foundation SA CEO

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Meet Kamohelo and his Shadow Buddy!

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Kamohelo, a brave 9-year-old boy who was diagnosed with Leukaemia in March. His treatment journey began at Universitas Hospital, but after careful consideration by the medical team, CHOC Regional Manager, and Social Worker, it was decided that Kamohelo and his mother would stay at the CHOC House during his treatment.

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Despite his condition, he loves exploring and participating in activities. His favorite pastime is organising all the scooters so that all the children can enjoy riding them. He’s a helpful young boy, always coming up with plans to make things easier for the house staff during cleaning. Additionally, he has taken an interest in learning other languages like Afrikaans, English, and Xhosa.
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​​​​​​​​​Social Worker Maria Mtonxa conducted a session with Kamohelo, using a shadow buddy to explain his diagnosis and explore his emotions. Initially, he felt very sick and scared during his hospital stay and treatment. However, now that he’s at the CHOC House, where he can play freely and be away from the restrictive hospital environment, Kamohelo is responding well to his treatment.
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Flip Flop Day 2024

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Stand together, shoulder to sole with Flippie by buying your sticker for R10 so that the brave children and teenagers of CHOC Childhood Cancer Foundation South Africa will never stand alone again in their fight against childhood cancer!

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Purchase your Flip Flop Day Stickers Here
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MacSteel’s Generous Support Shines on Flip Flop Day 2023

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We extend our heartfelt gratitude to MacSteel for being a standout supporter of Flip Flop Day 2023! Your enthusiastic participation has truly made a significant impact, and we are thrilled to share the exciting ways in which your team contributed to the festivities.

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As staunch advocates for our cause and CHOC Gauteng South, MacSteel generously purchased 3000 stickers, amounting to a total value of R30,000. These stickers were thoughtfully distributed to all MacSteel Branches nationwide, fostering widespread engagement in our mission.

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MacSteel staff were encouraged to showcase their creativity by finding unique ways to wear their flip flops, sparking conversations about cancer awareness within their teams. The results were nothing short of fantastic, with standout performances from individuals who truly embraced the spirit of the day.
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​​​​​​​​​Thank you for making Flip Flop Day 2023 a resounding success, MacSteelers! Your dedication and enthusiasm have not only elevated the event but also contributed significantly to our ongoing efforts in the fight against cancer.We look forward to your continued support and participation in the years to come. 

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Our Flip Flop day is an event aimed at raising awareness about childhood cancer. We would be delighted to have many other companies join us in this noble cause. Together, we can make a difference in the lives of children fighting cancer.

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Flip Flop Day is proudly supported by:
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CHOC Updates:

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Our Awareness Team trains the IMCI Coordinators
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​​​​​​​​​​​​Effective training can that children reach specialised treatment centers, ensuring they receive timely and effective treatment, along with access to vital medication and care. Our team recently provided training to IMCI Coordinators across all five Health Districts in Gauteng. This training initiative was collaboratively organised by CHOC and the Gauteng Department of Health.
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​​​​​​​​​​​​To read more about our Awareness and Education Programme, click here
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Thank you to the donors in KZN

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​​​​​​​​​​​​CHOC expresses gratitude to the KwaZulu-Natal Deeds Registry Office and the KwaZulu-Natal Surveyor General for their generous support in bringing hope and dignity to children diagnosed with cancer.
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​​​​​​​​​​​​The team successfully raised a total of R3100 through various fundraising initiatives.
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​​​​​​​​​​​​To get involved with events and fundraising for CHOC click here
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Thank you to the SAPPI Women of Worth Team

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Our sincere appreciation goes out to the SAPPI Women of Worth team for their invaluable support during our Give Some Hope campaign in September. Under the leadership of their CFO, Pramy Moodley, and Community Relations Lead, Zee Zeka Ngcamu, the team successfully raised R5000 to contribute to bringing hope to children battling cancer.
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​​​​​​​​​​​​To get involved with events and fundraising for CHOC click here
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Well done to The CHOC Cows

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​​​​​​​​​​​​MOOSIVE THANK MOO to each and every super cow, donor and supporter who completed the 947 Ride Joburg this year!
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​​​​​​​​​​​​Thank you for supporting our cause and being AMOOZING. Ride Joburg wouldn’t be the same without each and every one of you! 
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​​​​​​​​​​​​To join the herd, click here
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There is still time to make a difference this year! 

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The festive season brings a time of warmth, togetherness, and joy – a moment when families gather, and hearts overflow with gratitude and hope. It is a season of giving, a time when our souls resonate with the spirit of generosity and kindness.

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For many children, celebrating the holidays at home surrounded by their loved ones is a cherished idea. At CHOC Childhood Cancer Foundation SA, our mission is simple yet profound: to bring smiles to the faces of these young warriors by reuniting them with their families during this special time.

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We understand the significance of these moments and the hurdles many families encounter in making these reunions possible. Transport expenses can pose a substantial barrier, hindering the possibility of these children reuniting with their families during the holidays. That’s where we seek your support.

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Your generosity can transform the lives of these brave young souls. Your donation will help cover the costs of transportation, ensuring that these children, along with their caregivers, can journey home safely to spend precious moments with their families. It’s a gift of love, hope, and the creation of everlasting memories that these children will treasure for a lifetime.
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​​​​​​​​​Click here to donate to this campaign.

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Be the Light this Festive Season

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Childhood cancer presents an incredibly challenging path, one that is almost beyond comprehension. The idea of children and their families waking up and depending on battery-powered lanterns in such circumstances should also be inconceivable. Yet, in the face of our current challenges, this is the stark reality.

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CHOC has 13 home-away-from-home facilities that offer a safe, comfortable, and homely environment for the families during the lengthy and stressful cancer treatment phase. However, these facilities face the challenge of frequent power outages due to load-shedding, which affects the quality of life and comfort of the families.

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To address this problem, CHOC launched a solar campaign to install solar panels at its accommodation facilities. The solar panels provide a reliable and sustainable source of power for the CHOC houses, ensuring that the lights stay on even during load-shedding. The solar power also reduces the electricity bills and the carbon footprint of the facilities, making them more environmentally friendly.

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To donate towards this campaign, please click here.

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Every donation, no matter how big or small, makes a difference and helps us bring light and hope to these children and their families.

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Thank you for your kindness and generosity. Together, we can make this holiday season a memorable one for these children and their families.

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​​To spread hope, follow us on the social media platforms below

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Our mailing address is: ​​​​​​​​​​​​CHOC Childhood Cancer Foundation ​​​​​​​​​​​​45 Homestead Road ​​​​​​​​​​​​The Avenues Office Park ​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​Syringa Building ​​​​​​​​​​​​Rivonia ​​​​​​​​​​​​2128

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Email: ​​​​​​​​​​​​[email protected] ​​​​​​​​​​​​ ​​​​​​​​​​​​Tel: ​​​​​​​​​​​​086 111 3500

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​​​​​​​​​Copyright © 2023, CHOC Childhood Cancer Foundation SA. All rights reserved. ​​​​​​​​​ ​​​​​​​​​Read our Privacy Policy here.
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Childhood Cancer Awareness Month: 01- 31 September

JOINT MEDIA STATEMENT

To:                  Editors & Health Journalists
Issued by:      National Department of Health
Date:              Wednesday, 06 September 2023

Pretoria: The Department of Health in collaboration with various local and international stakeholders including CHOC Childhood Cancer Foundation South Africa and the World Health Organization (WHO) will spend the month of September creating awareness of the impact of cancer in many children and their families around the country to ensure children with childhood cancer in South Africa are diagnosed early for successful treatment.

Childhood cancer is one of the leading causes of disease-related death past infancy in children and adolescents. Several barriers impede the early diagnosis and referral of the child with cancer to treatment centres. Myths and stigmas surrounding the cause of childhood cancer is a major barrier to families seeking medical care timeously.

Lack of knowledge and fear of the unknown drives the myths, fallacies and stigmas surrounding childhood cancer resulting in missed diagnoses or presentation with advanced disease which negatively impacts outcome. We must educate our communities and primary health care workers that children do get cancer, can be treated, and cured.

In high -income countries with 20% of the world’s children with cancer, survival rates are more than 80% while the situation is different in low- and middle-income countries where survival is as low as 20-30%. Fortunately, children with cancer in South Africa have much better outcomes of between 55-60%.

According to Professor Gita Naidu, chair of South African Association of Paediatric Haematology Oncology, South Africa aligns with the WHO Global Initiative for Childhood Cancer (WHO-GICC), which aims to increase the survival of children and adolescents with cancer globally. We need to focus on early diagnosis, referral to specialised treatment centres, ensure access to diagnostics and therapeutics, and emphasise quality of life, supportive, long-term follow-up, and palliative care.

The WHO-GICC established in 2018, brings together stakeholders from around the world and across sectors with the joint goal of increasing the survival rate of children with cancer globally to at least 60% by 2030.

The initiative is guided by CureAll, a strategic and practical approach that involves Centers of excellence and care with a sufficient and competent workforce to increase capacity to deliver services; Universal health coverage that ensures access to essential medicines, diagnostics, and technologies; Research and innovation that generate evidence-based solutions for local contexts; and lastly Empowerment of patients, families, and communities through education, awareness, and advocacy.

Hedley Lewis, CHOC CEO calls on South Africans to unite and #GiveSomeHope as we work together to achieve the WHOs target to ensure at least 60% survival in low- and middle-income countries and to reduce suffering of all children with cancer by 2030 worldwide.

Dr Kibachio Joseph Mwangi, the Medical Officer responsible for Non-Communicable Diseases at the WHO, South Africa notes that the poor outcome of childhood cancer management in low- and middle-income countries is primarily driven by delays in diagnosis, inaccurate diagnosis, inaccessible therapy, abandonment of treatment, death from toxicity (side effects), and relapse. Dr Mwangi reckons that the current partnership with the WHO-GICC can lead to improved outcomes for children with cancer by focusing on a prompt, correct diagnosis followed by evidence-based therapy.

The department stresses the importance the St Siluan warning signs of childhood cancer which can be accessed at https://choc.org.za/childhood-cancer-early-warning-signs/.

 For more information and media enquiries, please contact:

 Mr Foster Mohale

Health Departmental Spokesperson

0724323792/ [email protected]

 

Mr Doctor Tshwale

Spokesperson for Health Minister

063 657 8487/ [email protected]

 

Mr Hedley Lewis

CEO CHOC

0829947655 / [email protected]

International Childhood Cancer Day – 15 February

Pretoria: South Africa will tomorrow (Wednesday) join the global community to observe the International Childhood Cancer Day to raise awareness and improve understanding of childhood cancer, which remains one of the leading causes of death in high-income countries amongst children under the age of 15.

Although childhood cancer is relatively rare, the incidence rate has been increasing which may be due to awareness. Almost 400 000 children are diagnosed annually, and South Africa accounts for almost 1500 of this global number. Many children with cancer in low-and-middle-income countries are either not diagnosed on time or referred too late for curative care. One of the contributing factors for this, is a lack of awareness and knowledge of the early warning signs.

The most common types of childhood cancers include leukaemia, lymphoma, brain, kidney and eye tumours.

The Department of Health working together with the South African Children’s Cancer Study Group and CHOC Childhood Cancer Foundation South Africa have initiated a programme to disseminate information to empower the communities with knowledge about the early warning signs and the unique and complex challenges faced by children with cancer and their families. They also endeavour to offer support all children during their arduous journey.

The World Health Organization, governments, civil society organisations and health care workers are in partnership to meet the WHO Global Initiative for Childhood Cancer (GICC) goals of a 60% overall survival in children and adolescents with cancer in low-and middle-income countries by 2030.

International Childhood Cancer Day is observed annually across the world on February 15, and the 2023 campaign is observed under the theme: #ThroughTheirHands, which focusses on paying tribute to the families and caregivers, and the positive impact they have on the lives of children and adolescents living with cancer.

The community, parents and caregivers are urged to familiarise themselves with the Siluan Early Warning Signs (https://choc.org.za/childhood-cancer-early-warning-signs/).

St. Jude Global Partnership

CHOC Childhood Cancer Foundation SA is humbled to have been chosen to join one of the most auspicious global alliances supporting children who are undergoing cancer treatment, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital Global Alliance. This Accolade is testimony to the paediatric oncologists and medical fraternity, the South African Department of Health, our employees, volunteers, and donors who all come together to give these families the chance to overcome childhood cancer.

As St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital Global Alliance recognises CHOC and becomes part of our family it means that we share the belief that every child, everywhere deserves the chance to live regardless of race, religion, or the ability to pay for treatment.

St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital is one of the largest, most respected paediatric cancer research hospitals in the world and is non-profit. No family receives a bill from the hospital, ever. St. Jude treats about 8,600 patients a year including patients from around the world.

Over the last 60 years, their research and treatments have helped raise paediatric cancer survival rates in the US from 20% to 80% and even 94% for some types of cancer. St. Jude treats all patients regardless of race, religion or the ability to pay. Globally 400,000 children (0-19 years) are diagnosed with cancer each year of which roughly 1000 are South African.

We are a Non-Profit Organisation and rely on funds donated by individuals, companies, trusts and foundations. We also host a number of fundraising projects and events to accrue further funding. Without CHOC, many children – particularly those from low-income households living far from treatment centres – would not adhere to the necessary but arduous treatment path. CHOC has a proven ability to deliver sustainable solutions effectively and is an established brand endorsed by specialists. Our reporting on expenditure is detailed, accurate and we provide audited financial statements annually. We have demonstrated visible growth and have proved that we deliver results. To donate to CHOC please click here.

Hedley Lewis comments, CHOC CEO has said “For a non-profit organisation on the tip of Africa, this is a dream come true. We trust that this partnership is dedicated to the shared vision of improving the quality of healthcare delivery and increasing survival rates of children with cancer and blood disorders, not only in South Africa but worldwide”.

SA Flip Flop Day 2023

CHOC Childhood Cancer Foundation SA Flip Flop Day 2023 – Get Your Flip Flops Out!

Did you know, in some way or form, each and every single one of us is affected by childhood cancer? While it may not affect you directly in some cases – it could be someone close to you – a beloved family member or the child of a close friend or colleague. But one thing is for certain – we all know of one brave little child or teenager fighting against it every day.

But they’re never alone – these courageous soldiers will always have the support, love and strength from those around them, even if it’s through a donation from a stranger who they will never meet.

CHOC Childhood Cancer Foundation South Africa is an advocate for the fight against this life-threatening illness – offering psychosocial, emotional and patient facing support to families and children and teenagers diagnosed with cancer.

Made up of passionate, caring, committed and dedicated staff and volunteers, CHOC’s one goal is simple – to save lives through early detection, and to enable us all to stand up, stand strong and stand together to support these fearless little warriors.

Our 4th Annual Flip Flop Day Is Almost Here!

We’re not really about counting the days here – we’re more about making each and every day count. CHOC is about using HOPE as the medicine for all diseases.

And so, Flip Flop Day and Flippie have stepped up to the forefront to get every South African – young or old, the corporate or casual, the beach-side dweller or the city slicker – to get up and literally wear their heart on their soles on Friday the 17th of February 2023!

He’s told us to pass this message to you, “Rise up and join us! Kick off those shoes and let your toes be free on Friday, the 17th of February 2023 by showing your support and love for our warriors by flipping on a pair of flip flops. Let’s show this life-threatening disease that we South Africans are a force to be reckoned with!

“I’m ready to show my support! Where can I get my Flip Flop Day sticker?”

As the needs of the children, teenagers and their families increase and our desire to enhance our augmentation of the medical fraternity treatment continues, we are aiming to raise even more than R2 MILLION last year!

Partnered for greatness, you can get your sticker for only R10 at your nearest PNA, Tekkie Town, or by visiting www.choc.org.za or popping into your nearest CHOC region.

Hedley Lewis, CHOC CEO, comments “your small donation will make the biggest difference in the lives of these valiant little ones and their families. With your R10, you are not only helping CHOC fund their Core Programmes, but you’ll also be giving the gift of hope, solidarity and support to anyone and everyone fighting against cancer”.

So, are you ready to be flip’n awesome this Flip Flop Day? Ready to flip on your favourite pair of flip flops and rock out with your toes out?

Corporate companies, small businesses, ladies and gents – let’s do this together – let’s help pave the way with love and support for these amazing kids to see a brighter tomorrow.

Childhood Cancer Awareness Month

South Africa joins the rest of the global community to commemorate childhood cancer awareness month in September to raise awareness about children`s cancers to reduce child mortality rate and highlight the global burden of childhood cancers.

 

Although, children`s cancers are not always treated like adult cancers, they are highly curable with higher survival rates in high-income countries, while the situation is different in low-middle-income countries.

 

Delayed diagnosis together with too few specially trained health specialists, such as doctors and nurses, contribute to low survival rates. The 2022 Childhood Cancer Awareness Month is commemorated under the theme: “Better Survival is achievable #throughyourhands” which serves as a clarion call for governments, non-government, and the private sector to work together to achieve at least 60% survival in low-middle-income countries and to reduce suffering of all children with cancer by 2030 worldwide.

 

Globally, childhood and adolescent cancer is threatening to overtake infectious diseases, as one of the highest causes of disease-related mortality in children. Despite being relatively rare, in high-income countries childhood cancer is the second most common cause of death in children aged 5 to 14 years, after accidents, whilst in Africa it does not make it into the top 10 common causes.

 

The month of September is considered a month of hope for better treatment outcomes, for a brighter and healthier future for young cancer patients.

 

Professor Gita Naidu, Chair of South African Children’s Cancer Study Group says, “Early diagnosis and availability of basic childhood cancer drugs will enable us to meet the WHO 2030 goal of an overall survival of 60% in low-middle-income countries. Childhood cancer can be cured”.

 

According to Dr Kibachio Joseph Mwangi, Medical Officer responsible for Non-Communicable Diseases at the  World Health Organization of South Africa, “unlike in adults where screening has a huge impact on early cancer diagnosis treatment and outcome, awareness of childhood cancer symptoms by families and primary care providers, accurate and timely clinical evaluation as well as accurate diagnosis, staging and access to prompt treatment will go a long way to improve our survival rate in children with cancer”.  Early detection of childhood cancer affords early diagnosis enabling a better chance of being cured and an increase in the survival rate.

 

Sandhya Singh, Acting Chief Director: NCD Cluster, NDoH stresses the importance of meaningful engagement with all stakeholders in particular with children and teenagers living with cancer as well as their parents or caregivers to better understand their lived experiences and these impact on their access to care as well as the quality of survival.

 

Hedley Lewis, CHOC CEO says, “you have the power to make a change, no matter who you are, let’s be a voice for our children and teenagers this International Childhood Cancer Awareness Month! Our children deserve to live a full life, and we have the power to give them the chance to do so”.

 

The survival rate of SA has gradually increased over the past few years to about 55%, though it is still well below the rate of developed countries of 80 to 90%, and the WHO GICC 2030 goal of at least a 60% survival rate. Statistics indicate that countries may be missing some children and teens who are either never diagnosed, misdiagnosed or unreported. A key factor is the lack of knowledge about the early warnings signs of childhood cancer which are accessible in various platforms including CHOC website

 

Members of the public are urged to be the change for those going through the childhood cancer journey and for those who have been newly diagnosed. There are many ways people can get involved this September, in order to make a difference in the lives of children and teenagers who are on the cancer recovery journey.

 

For more information and media enquiries, please contact:

 

Mr Foster Mohale

Health Departmental Spokesperson

0724323792

[email protected]

Hedley Lewis

CHOC CEO

0829947655

[email protected]

 

 

Lancet Laboratories in Collaboration with CHOC Childhood Cancer Foundation

Lancet Laboratories in Collaboration with CHOC Childhood Cancer Foundation SA showing that #LancetLabCares

Sandile Sihlaba (Group Chief Marketing Officer) at Lancet Laboratories, “we pride ourselves in providing laboratory services with diagnostic excellence and being at the forefront of diagnostic innovation.”

Lancet Laboratories recognises the importance of engaging and interacting with the communities we operate in, as part of our Corporate Social Responsibility and Investment. This is done through our various #LancetLabCares initiatives. We are grateful to take part in initiatives that allow us to give back and be in unity with the communities.

Lancet Laboratories supports various NPO’s nationally and CHOC Childhood Cancer Foundation South Africa is one of them that speaks to our motto which is #LancetLabCares so this ongoing relationship with CHOC has now grown nationally.

Lancet Laboratories and CHOC has embarked on a national initiative to appreciate and celebrate Nurses at the 16 Paediatric Oncology units, CHOC augments treatment through its Comprehensive Child and Family Support Programme.  Five hundred nurses in paediatric oncology were gifted with pouches and pens in acknowledgement of their vital contribution to children and teens with cancer and life-threatening blood disorder.

“CHOC is privileged to partner with Lancet Laboratories to pay tribute to the nurses in Paediatric Oncology Units across the country. Individuals who stand side by side with patients, 24 hours a day with passion and love. I would like to pay tribute to Lancet Labs who proudly integrate corporate values to support South Africa” Hedley Lewis, CEO of CHOC Childhood Cancer Foundation SA.

CHOC Childhood Cancer Foundation SA receive their first Solar System

CHOC Childhood Cancer Foundation SA receive their first Solar System!

We have officially announced the first clean renewable energy project of a CHOC accommodation facility which was made possible by the generous financial support of the Australian High Commission. Based close to the specialised paediatric oncology treatment centres, our accommodation facilities are a home-away-from-home where the children and teenagers who are undergoing treatment for childhood cancer or a life-threatening blood disorder can come and stay with their parents or caregivers. These houses provide families with access to the healthcare facilities for treatment which would not have been possible due to distance or financial restraints.  The accommodation facilities provide a therapeutic environment that helps patients and parents/caregivers maintain a positive attitude during the cancer journey.  All meals are provided, as well as transport to and from the hospitals. It is a clean and safe environment with caring and understanding staff, a place where new friendships are formed.

Hedley Lewis, CHOC CEO, was joined by Her Excellency, Gita Kamath from The Australian High Commission as well as MMC Health Cllr Rina Marx (City of Tshwane) and MMC Community & Social Development Cllr Peggy de Bruin (City of Tshwane). It was an intimate but prestigious event where we expressed how grateful we are for the new system implemented into our house and how we can start to filter the “going green” theme throughout CHOC.

The first of its kind addition to a CHOC facility, a Solar System, which will be a huge benefit to not only the Northern Region home but also to the environment. The use of this Solar System will bring assurance that our families will have hot water and a warm house in winter, our phones will always be charged, and meals will never be delayed. These seem like small items but play a big role when we want to make their stay as comfortable as possible, providing a home away from home. Hedley Lewis has said that “the money which will be saved from this system will be utilised within the house, bringing down our monthly running costs.” In addition to this, the other benefits of these include being pollution-free and causes no greenhouse gases to be emitted after installation. Reduced dependence on foreign oil and fossil fuels. Renewable clean power that is available every day of the year, even cloudy days produce some power. Return on investment unlike paying for utility bills.