Give Hope for Cancer Patients this Sei Pua Day 2019
The month of August is a special time of year for the Samoa Cancer Society who launches the annual Sei Pua Day Awareness and Fundraising Campaign this Thursday, 1st August, 2019.
Normally held in October, Sei Pua has been brought forward to August to commemorate together with the New Zealand and Australian Cancer Societies and their Daffodil Days at the end of the month. Sei Pua Day remembers our loved one who have lost their lives to cancer and give thanks for those who have been treated and recovered.
The Pua or the frangipani flower symbolizes HOPE, STRENGTH to withstand tough challenges and NEW LIFE. It is with this inspiration that the Society is approaching individuals, groups, schools, organisations, businesses and the government sector, seeking donations and support during the month of August.
This year the Samoa Cancer Society has planned a line-up of activities to commemorate Sei Pua not only just for a day but the entire month of August. One such activity includes members of the community being invited to register a fundraising activity they would like to initiate and carry out themselves with proceeds going to support the work of the Society. For instance one government organization that has registered their activity, will hold a Yellow Mufti Day every Tuesday with staff members paying a minimum of $3 tala per mufti day. This will be followed by their own competition at the end of the month before presenting their total contribution to the Samoa Cancer Society.
The Society has also acquired the services of a local sei maker to supply the yellow and various colour themed ‘sei pua’ that is now available for sale at the Samoa Cancer Society for supporters to place their orders. Also available for sale will be ‘sei pua’ Stickers that you can purchase to show your support.
The month long campaign will culminate in a ‘Paint the Town Yellow’ Day on Friday 30th, August in front of the government building with society staff and volunteers walking the town in their best yellow offering fresh sei flowers for any and all kind contributions. It is the hope of the society that the community on this day can help the cause by wearing a yellow themed outfit or sei and in effect, complete the ‘paint the town yellow’ theme of the day.
Any and all contributions made to the society enables the continuation of the Vave Campaign that promotes crucial early presentation and diagnosis, so that cancer need not be fatal.
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Cancer is the second highest cause of death in Samoa; in 2018 the top three cancers that were presented to the society included breast cancer (137), colorectal cancer (61) and prostate cancer (37).
The key services that the Samoa Cancer Society provides include Palliative Care advice, support and Patient Support Visits in Upolu & Savaii District Areas as well as Manono Tai. In 2018 the Society registered just over 90 referrals; 44 patients on average per month are supported by visits or phone calls from SCS while a total of 165 patients were visited by the society at either home or hospital last year.
Community Outreach and Education is another key service that continues for the society. In 2018 SCS conducted 37 community outreach sessions with more than 2,700 community members reached (1.4% of the Samoan population, SBS 2016)