Bra Bank Malawi donates to cancer patients at National Cancer Centre

Cancer patients and their guardians at the National Cancer Centre, which is housed within the Kamuzu Central Hospital (KCH) premises in Lilongwe, received an early Christmas gift on Monday, thanks to Bra Bank Malawi.

The organization donated food and non-food items worth over K1.5 million to enable the patients and their guardians celebrate this year’s birth of Jesus Christ whilst on full stomach.

Bra Bank Malawi co-founder and executive director Judith Msonthi said the social and economic challenges that cancer patients and their families face motivated her team to raise funds, which were used to buy the donated items.

Judith Msonthi–My mother is currently undergoing cancer chemotherapy abroad–Photo by Watipaso Mzungu

She disclosed that for the past two months, her organization spent time collecting bras while informing women about self-breast examination, clinical breast examinations, mammograms and becoming ardent supporters for breast cancer awareness and research.

“We relate to the breast cancer disease as the disease has directly affected our mothers, aunties, cousins, and neighbours. All we want is for women to be aware of the benefits of early detection as there is no cure for breast cancer,” said Msonthi whose mother is a cancer patient currently receiving treatment abroad.

She stated that breast cancer remains as a hidden disease among women in Malawi, as research has proven that it is the most common of cancer for women.

“Every two minutes a female is, diagnosed with breast cancer and every 13 minutes on women will die of breast cancer. In 2022, an estimated 287, 850 women and 2, 710 men will be, diagnosed with breast cancer. An estimated 43, 250 women and 530 men will die from the disease,” Msonthi narrated.

Judith Msonthi distributing bras to cancer patients at the National Cancer Centre in Lilongwe on Monday–Photo by Watipaso Mzungu

National Cancer Centre Chief Nursing Officer Tikondwe Sichinga said the donation will go a long way in supplementing nutrition requirements for the patients.

Sichinga appealed to other organizations to emulate the gesture, stressing that the facility does not have adequate resources to meet the food and other requirements of the patients.

Currently, KCH treats almost 40 outpatients weekly that are on chemotherapy treatment due to breast cancer diagnosis. Most women come from rural areas and do not have adequate resources or care at the hospital or even in the homes.

These strong women are not only battling cancer, but also suffering daily to keep themselves healthy and strong for their next treatment, according to information from Bra Bank Malawi.

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