Cancer Survivor’s Day is next Sunday (3 June) and to honour all cancer survivors, the Cancer Association of South Africa (CANSA), is encouraging South Africans to make a statement against cancer and a mark for cancer survivors by signing a special message.

Companies and individuals are invited to go to any CANSA Care Centre and write messages to cancer survivors on fabric with a permanent marker. These pieces of fabric will then be used to create items such as tablecloths, aprons, curtains, bedspreads or pillowcases for use in CANSA’s Care Homes and Centres across the country – ensuring that these messages of hope and support are read by those who receive treatment and care and need encouragement to go on with the fight.

Everyone participating will receive a certificate from CANSA to show they took part.

CANSA also encourages the public to post messages of hope online via CANSA’s “Champions of Hope” Facebook page dedicated to cancer survivors.

“CANSA wants to empower survivors to fight back during their cancer journey,” says Sue janse van Rensburg, CANSA’s CEO and a cancer survivor of 28 years. “Although more and more people are surviving cancer thanks to earlier diagnosis and better treatment, the increase in cancer diagnosis also implies that more people are in need of the support of their families and communities.”

CANSA’s wide-reaching health programme includes prevention and education campaigns, patient care and support – they continue to help cancer survivors and their family and friends by providing support through stoma and lymphoedema clinics, medical equipment hire, day-care services, support groups and Care Home services.

“Our aim is to ensure that cancer survivors and their loved ones don’t have to face cancer alone, we’re here to support them through every step of their cancer journey,” Van Rensburg says.