May 1, 2012
As many as 20,000 people joined the Susan G. Komen Uzbekistan Race for the Cure on May 1 to say no to breast cancer. Organized by Fund Forum, Susan G. Komen for the Cure, the National Breast Cancer Association and the Women's Council, the race sought raise public awareness of breast cancer and raised funds to support efforts in Uzbekistan to fight the disease, which claims millions of lives worldwide.
Held on Tashkents Abdulla Qodiri Street, the race featured public figures, school children, Uzbek celebrities, doctors, athletes, businessmen, government officials, women living with breast cancer and everyone willing to contribute to a charitable cause. The international participants of the race included members of the UN Family, including the UN Information Center (UNIC) in Tashkent, the UNESCO, the UNFPA , the World Bank and the UNDP, representatives of the embassies of India, Italy and the USA and international organizations such as the British Council, the Japan International Cooperation Agency, the Korea International Cooperation Agency and the Konrad Adenauer Foundation among others.
The race was split into 5 groups: inclusive education; families with children; school, college and university students; women from various organizations, doctors and members of the diplomatic corps; and students, volunteers, celebrities and athletes. Winners of each group were honored with prizes and diplomas.
The International Race Ambassador of Susan G. Komen for the Cure, Donna Sanderson, handed awards to members of the National Breast Cancer Association, Sanofi Aventis pharmaceuticals company as well as breast cancer survivors affiliated with “In the Name of Life” Association of Women – Galina Suplotova, Zubaida Hamidova and Marina Kurmanbayeva – who set an example to other women with their courage, determination and faith in life.
Gulnara Karimova, the chairwoman of National Breast Cancer Association's Public Council, who also joined the race, presented diplomas to the group of musicians and actors who had participated in the April 23 fundraising football match in Tashkent.
The race and the football match raised a total of 216 mln soums. The proceeds will go toward organizing free early detection campaigns, supporting women diagnosed with breast cancer, providing psychological and social rehabilitation as well as purchasing medication for breast cancer sufferers.
Also, the May 1 race had an educational purpose, with information stands mounted at the starting and finish points of the race and doctors distributing brochures on breast self-exam and answering participants’ questions about breast cancer. The event was pepped up with a concert which featured performances by Uzbek singers such as Rayhon, Nilufar Usmanova, Shokhrukhhon and Sahro group.
The Tashkent race concluded the string of marathons held in other Uzbek regions, which drew roughly 40,000 people. All told, over 100,000 people have participated in the major fundraising run since it was launched in 2010.
- “What a wonderful day. We are grateful to all of you who have joined us for this very important event. The Komen organization was founded on a sister’s promise Nancy Brinker to Susan G. Komen. As Susan was dying from the disease, Nancy promised her she would spend the rest of her life trying to find a cure for the disease. That was over 30 years ago… and in those years we have been honored to work in more than 50 countries. We have worked in Europe, Africa, the Middle East, Latin America, Australia and now we are very proud to work with the National Breast Cancer Association of Uzbekistan, the first country in Central Asia. This disease is universal. It does not respect politics, national boundaries, culture or religion. It strikes equally. And it will take all of us, working together, to end it.”
- “Frankly, I didn’t expect that the race would attract so many people ready to help women living breast cancer. This amount of support from thousands of people means a lot to me. I’m convinced that more women with breast cancer will be provided with help this year thanks to the huge number of participants. It is great to see so many caring people ready support women. Thank you so much!”
- “This is not the first time I’m participating in this fundraising run. I’m very happy to see the thousands of people who have come together to contribute to the fight against breast cancer. Today we can also see participants from other countries, and that means that this event is becoming internationally popular.”
- “As a track-and-field and karate athlete, I am glad to see so many other athletes joining the race. We are currently getting ready for the Paralympic Games in London. Participation in this sort of events gives us strength and hope and lifts our spirits, and this is amazing! And we’re happy with this opportunity to support women living with breast cancer.”
- “This is amazing! Tashkent is a very beautiful city and I’m so happy to participate in such a big event and join the 3-kilometer race along with so many people.”
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