| Lyna Mohamad |
THE Agape Family Centre Bhd (AFC) yesterday donated $8,000 to the Children’s Cancer Foundation (YASKA), to help the foundation run and manage social events for its members.
Presenting the donation at a ceremony at the RIPAS Paediatric Oncology Ward was one of AFC’s Directors, Mary Chin, while YASKA was represented by its Treasurer, Tsara’ Nawwarah Abdullah Chen, and was witnessed by AFC and YASKA members as well as nurses. Also present yesterday were Executive Managers of AFC, Helen Sitai and Karen Tsen.
A non-profitable organisation formed in 2005, AFC promotes family values and helps the community through fund raising activities such as charity food sales and selling arts and crafts produced by the children.
YASKA is a non-governmental organisation with the aim of providing children with cancer support beginning with their diagnosis and throughout their treatment and beyond.
An Occupational Therapist at the Paediatric Oncology Ward, Norazmizah Hj Awg Tengah noted that they also help organise events for YASKA in addition to administering treatments.
The donation will be used for social events such as birthday parties and buying presents for the children as well as young patients under palliative care.
Social events help to cheer them up and let them know that they are not alone and that there is a place for them to enjoy gatherings.
Support from the public has been encouraging as the foundation continuously receives contributions from associations and organisations, she said. Further highlighting the need for the public to be made more aware of the rate of occurrence of cancer among children, she mentioned that there are cases of children as young as a few months old being diagnosed.
She also shared that recently a patient diagnosed with cancer at the age of six months old passed away at the age of two.
There are also cases of cancer affecting vegetarians and babies who are fed breast milk.
She stressed that once a positive diagnosis is made a patient needs to embrace treatment fully as it is not an easy process and requires a team working together for at least two years at the hospital.
YASKA has said that at present there are 14 children receiving treatment, while 60 children are undergoing follow-ups and that as of 2004, 30 have passed away.