The Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection has announced a National Inter-School Cancer Quiz Competition as part of efforts to increase visibility and mileage for the campaign against cancers.
The competition will be held for senior high schools in the country.
At a maiden meeting with the 15-member, first-ever Cancer Advisory Board in Accra, the sector minister, Mrs Cynthia Morrison, said the combined effects of breast, childhood, cervical and prostate cancers, among others, on the national budget was overwhelming and called for a strong coalition to stem the surge in statistics.
She commended the cancer board for the modest gains made in its relatively short period of existence and said the novelty quiz contest among senior high schools would ingrain cancer content into the youth.
The Chairperson of the Board and President of Breast Care International (BCI), Dr Beatrice Wiafe Addai, whose NGO pioneered the concept in collaboration with the Ashanti Regional Coordinating Council and the Ashanti Regional Education Directorate last year, explained that the concept was aimed at catching the youth at an early age with cancer-related messages.
Dr Wiafe believed empowering the youth with the right knowledge would make them worthy cancer ambassadors in anticipation of a cancer-free future.
The nationwide annual inter-school contest will take place in the run-up to the country’s independence celebrations.
Mrs Morrison and Dr Wiafe concurred that cancers should be fought head-on and regretted that cancers had not attracted the much-needed attention.
They believed the accompanying prize packages for participating schools would encourage research among the competing students into the known causes and treatment cycle of cancers.
Dr Wiafe also lobbied for the inclusion of indigent breast cancer patients on the Livelihood Empowerment Against Poverty (LEAP).
The maiden competition which was held in Kumasi last year was won by the T.I. Ahmadiyya Senior High School after defeating the KNUST Senior High School. The Kumasi Girls SHS placed third.