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Monday August 16, 2010

Educate children on healthy lifestyle

IN Malaysia, over 1,500 children are diagnosed with cancer every year. For National Cancer Society of Malaysia (NCSM) chief executive and medical director Dr Saunthari Somasundaram, it aches her the most when she has to deal with children who are battling with the disease.

“By teaching children positive habits, we have the opportunity to make a difference in our children’s future,” said Dr Saunthari during the launch of the “Hope for Our Children” campaign.

The awareness campaign, held in collaboration with Courts Malaysia, plans to empower children with the knowledge that healthy lifestyle habits adopted early in life can make a positive difference in reducing the risk of cancer.

Charity walkthon: Staff members Courts Malaysia and NCSM volunteers walking around the Mutiara Damansara area with cancer survivors.

The campaign’s outreach efforts was unveiled during a brief ceremony held in Mutiara Damansara where a collection of images of three cancer survivors and their families was exhibited.

The photographs, captured by renowned photographer Kid Chan, will be exhibited at all Courts Malaysia’s 50 stores nationwide next week together with posters and postcards that the public could take home when they drop their contribution into the donation boxes placed at each outlet.

“As adults and parents we have a serious responsibility towards children.

“We need to set good examples in how we live our lives,” said Courts Malaysia country director Chris Yong.

Yong added that parents also needed to educate their children, who would be able to influence their parents in inculcating a healthy lifestyle.

Each region, he said would also be setting up its own committee to coordinate an employee programme with NCSM.

As an incentive, employees who decide to volunteer for the organisation would be given one-day paid leave for their contribution.

The home furnishing retailer hopes to raise a total of RM1mil for the cause by hosting walkathons in the Klang Valley, Johor, Ipoh, Kuantan and Sarawak followed by a charity dinner as well as a school outreach programme in 2011.

At the launch, 200 staff members of NCSM and Courts Malaysia took a morning walk around Mutiara Damansara before going to work.

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