Cancer survivors who stood up for themselves braving all odds shared their stories, breathing fresh life into the National Cancer Survivors Day 2013 event, organised by Mahatma Gandhi Cancer Hospital and Research Institute (MGCHRI).

A caring touch, kind words, love and affection, and a support system network work like magic while fighting the battle against the terminal disease cancer. Self confidence and will power were the key elements underlined by most of the cancer survivors who stood up for themselves braving all odds to breathe fresh life during the celebration of National Cancer Survivors Day – 2013 organised by Mahatma Gandhi Cancer Hospital and Research Institute (MGCHRI).

It was more like a carnival where 500 cancer survivors with their family members and friends joined hands to share their moments of joy and sorrow at Port Kalavani Auditorium on Sunday. Aiming to help remove the social stigma attached to cancer and to create awareness that it is a curable disease, the MGCHRI team have come up with the initiative. “A cancer patient can lead a meaningful life after his or her recovery. Detecting the disease early is the catch word. With advanced technology available in the city, one can get completely cured of cancer and lead a normal life,” explained managing director of MGCHRI and surgical oncologist Muralikrishna Voonna who has so far performed 4,500 major surgeries treating cancer since 2006.

District Collector V. Seshadri complimented the team of the hospital and said: “The event conveys strong message that cancer is curable and it marks the victory of spirit of life over the disease. Many slip into a state of trauma the moment they are diagnosed of cancer. But with will power and self confidence one can triumph over the disease.”

Appreciating the initiative, VUDA Vice Chairman N. Yuvaraj said: “Cancer is an age-old ailment. With timely detection and proper treatment, it can be cured. One has to look beyond the disease and help patients gain confidence. It is important to create awareness and help them come out of the social stigma attached to the disease.”

A number of cancer survivors shared their experiences and mixed emotions they have undergone before and after the treatment. Some of the survivors sang while some staged classical dance. One of the survivors, G. Annapoorna from Rajahmundry performed Kolatam. Social worker and cancer survivor Indira Naidu briefed about her experience in the hospital and how doctors extended support in fighting breast cancer.