Jawaher Al Qasimi: Pink Caravan Ride is a national initiative for the safety of UAE society


Her Highness Sheikha Jawaher bint Mohammed Al Qasimi, Wife of the Ruler of Sharjah and Founder and Royal Patron of the Friends of Cancer Patients (FoCP), International Ambassador for the World Cancer Declaration of the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC), International Ambassador for Childhood Cancer for UICC, and Patron of the Global NCD Alliance Forum, has raised a call to action against breast cancer, once again urging community members and media personnel across the UAE to extend maximum possible support to the national annual breast cancer awareness drive by FoCP, the Pink Caravan Ride.

The eighth edition of the campaign will travel to all seven emirates, starting February 28 to March 6, and is taking place under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Dr. Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, Member of the Supreme Council and Ruler of Sharjah.

In the run-up to the eighth edition of the Pink Caravan Ride, Sheikha Jawaher has urged all community members – citizens and residents, as well as national media institutions to participate actively in this year’s ride and support all its awareness and fund-raising activities.

Her Highness Sheikha Jawaher emphasised that dedicating one’s time and effort to the annual Pink Caravan Ride breast cancer awareness campaign is a national and humanitarian duty, as among other things, it reinforces the values and principles the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan founded the nation upon.

“People’s participation in a campaign such as the Pink Caravan Ride is embraced and strongly encouraged by the UAE’s wise leadership as a way of ensuring the health and safety of citizens and residents. Such collective efforts contribute to increasing the welfare and happiness of society, and enables its members to join hands in tackling a widespread issue like breast cancer that affects the entire community including women and men,” Sheikha Jawaher Al Qasimi remarked.

“Breast cancer is a disease that can be better controlled and fought with heightened awareness, which can be considered as the first step on the path to recovery. This is exactly what the Pink Caravan has been doing for the past seven years through the free breast screenings and medical examinations it has offered to women and men in all the seven emirates. The campaign’s significance does not only emerge from the fact that its early detections may help save several lives, but also in the way it enlightens people by correcting misconceptions and spreading hope among the affected,” Her Highness emphasised.

Her Highness Sheikha Jawaher Al Qasimi has encouraged women and men of all nationalities and age groups in the UAE to undergo the free medical examinations clinics and healthcare centres throughout the nation will offer during the weeklong Pink Caravan Ride. Sheikha Jawaher also encouraged them to benefit from premium medical services provided by the new state-of-the-art medical mobile mammography clinic the Pink Caravan has launched this year to offer free breast cancer screenings and cervical cancer tests throughout the year.

Sheikha Jawaher Al Qasimi lauded the great support given by government organisations and private companies, national media, and the hundreds of doctors, nurses, riders and volunteers, to the Pink Caravan over the past seven years. She confirmed that the overwhelming community interaction with the campaign has greatly enabled it to communicate its message of awareness to wider community segments, leaving a positive impact on them.

Her Highness called on media outlets – responsible for the successful outreach of all humanitarian and national initiatives – to extend more support to the Pink Caravan this year by joining hands with the campaign in spreading message of the importance of early detection of breast cancer and dispelling misconceptions surrounding it. Sheikha Jawaher highlighted the essential role of media in boosting awareness efforts and encouraging citizens and residents to be part of this year’s ride and participate effectively in its activities, thereby contributing to realising its goals and reaching everyone who live in the UAE.

Sheikha Jawaher stressed that the Pink Caravan’s Higher Organising Committee works according to preventive and precautionary plans that aim to protect community members against breast cancer – especially with almost 1.1 million women being annually diagnosed with breast cancer worldwide. Among them, 410,000 women die because the malignancy is detected in advanced stages. She noted that 98 percent of the cases detected in the first stages can be treated to a complete recovery.

“Although breast cancer is one of the most common cancers in women worldwide, comprising 16 per cent of all cancer types that affect women, it affects men too. Also, it has far-reaching impact on the sufferer’s families and friends, making it even more important for us to provide moral and psychological support to patients and their kin,” Sheikha Jawaher emphasised.

Addressing citizens and residents, Sheikha Jawaher said: “The Pink Caravan is an initiative that mainly aims to promote the important message of early detection of breast cancer and the need for regular screenings after a certain age. We hope these messages contribute to being the driving force for everyone in community to participate in this annual initiative, and invite our family members, friends and colleagues at work to join us in this furthering a noble cause.”

Pink Caravan Ride 2018 will set off on a nationwide journey from February 28- March 6, during which it will travel across the seven emirates, accompanied by its riders, volunteers and medical teams. The ride will begin with an opening ceremony in Sharjah and come to a close in the capital, Abu Dhabi.

In its past seven editions, Pink Caravan Ride has travelled 1,640 kilometres offering free breast screenings and medical check-ups to 48,874 persons through its 578 fixed and mobile clinics.