Mangaluru, Feb 10: Father Muller Medical College Hospital (FMMCH), in collaboration with the Indian Cancer Society, observed World Cancer Day and World Childhood Cancer Day with a remarkable awareness and felicitation event on February 9.
The Muller ‘Can-Survive’ programme, held at the Convention Centre's 2nd-floor Auditorium, honoured financial, blood, and body donors, while also highlighting the triumphs of children who battled cancer. A poignant moment unfolded as child cancer survivors led the evening's inauguration, symbolized by the floating of paper boats to the tune of ‘Dhoni Saagali Munde Hogali’, signifying victory over adversity and inspiring others with their journey.
Administrator of FMMC, Fr Ajith B Menezes, welcomed the gathering, which included faculty, students, and donors. Dr Chandana Pai assistant professor & paediatric haemato-oncologist, articulated the significance of World Cancer Day before the felicitation of the financial donors, whose contributions aided cancer-stricken individuals. The list of donors, includes notable organizations and individuals namely Bishop's House Mangalore diocese, CODP, the late Archbishop Ambrose Madtha, Lytta D'Souza Mangaluru, Konkan Dubai Cancer Patients Foundation, Melwin Peris, Shri Dharmasthala Manjunatheshwara Trust, Sodality of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Indian Cancer Society, Jewels Group, Care Child Cancer, Society of St Vincent De Paul, Congregation of the Daughters of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, Ave Maria Palliative Care, Hearld Moras, Seeds of Hope, Dolphy Pinto, Suresh Kini, Mother Theresa Group, and Aasare Balaga was read out by social worker Vandana Carvalho social worker, with representatives receiving honours.
The event also paid tribute to the families of organ and body donors, acknowledging their compassionate decision in moments of grief. Reshma D’Sa organ transplant coordinator, presented the names of donors, evoking heartfelt gratitude from families for their inclusion and appreciation.
Sheila of the Indian Cancer Society and Rohan Carlo of Veera's dudes&dolls Style Studio were recognized for their support in the morning's blood and hair donation campaign and cancer awareness initiatives. A video highlighting FMMCH's oncology departments and spreading cancer awareness was released.
Fr Richard Aloysius Coelho director FMCI, expressed gratitude to donors and faculty, stressing the theological perspective on death and the importance of unity, love, and service to the sick in his presidential address. Dr Kelvin Pais liaison officer, delivered the vote of thanks, while Dr Rithesh D’Cunha associate professor anaesthesiology and K Jonica Johny PG physiotherapy served as event comperes, with Dr Shiji P professor community nursing managing the stage.
Following the programme, children received dry fruits and toys from the Indian Cancer Society and Herald Moras respectively. The evening continued with the Tulu drama ‘Naida Beela’ by Dr (Hon) Devdas Kapikad, bringing laughter and entertainment to the audience of 1000 in the Convention Centre's state-of-the-art auditorium.
Reflecting on the event's success, organizers emphasized their commitment to supporting and acknowledging childhood and adult cancer survivors in their journey towards recovery.