Cancer is one of the most common health issues that the whole world is struggling with. Various government and non-government organizations and hospitals are continuously making efforts to make people aware about this disease. A similar initiative was taken up by a Guwahti-based NGO named Pathik.
Pathik, in association with the Dr. Bhubaneshwar Barooah Cancer Institute (BCCI) and Anupam Jeevan (an NGO) on 24th May, organized a cyclathon as a part of the anti-tobacco awareness campaign. Dr. Amal Kataki, the director of BCCI flagged off the cyclathon in which around 100 cyclists participated. The main motive of the cyclathon was to spread awareness regarding the harmful effects of tobacco. About 60% of the cases received by BCCI are cases of cancer caused due to tobacco, which is very common in the Northeastern region.
As a part of the anti-tobacco awareness campaign the NGO also organized a workshop for the health workers and the counselors on 25 and 26 May.
In conversation with Fit Northeast, Mr. Victor Rajkumar, the founder of the NGO, introduced Pathik as a socio cultural voluntary organization with a moto to serve people, help people, motivate people, save people as well as save the earth and the environment. The NGO has started doing a mass awareness to make a 'Tobacco-free Society' since 2017. The mass awareness camps, walkathons organized by Pathik involves a large number of students, police personnels and media to spread the health message.
It was emphasized that this is the only NGO which does not have a single doctor but is a member of the BCCI. In association with the Northeast Cancer Institute, the NGO has done several projects in Morigaon.Mr. Rajkumar added that various activities done by the NGO includes the workshops and health camps (screening camps) related to women health (especially cancer among the women population) in the rural areas. After the patients are detected with cancer, they are helped in getting treatment at the BCCI. Along with the treatment the members of the NGO give counseling to the patients and their family members to help them go through the hard phase. The NGO mainly works in bridging the gap between the treatment and mental health.
It is emphasized that this is the only NGO which does not have a single doctor but is a member of the BCCI. In association with the Northeast Cancer Institute, the NGO has also carried out several projects in Morigaon.
Mr. Rajkumar added that the women in rural areas are very less aware of their menstrual hygiene as a result of which the cases of cervical cancer are more in the rural areas. The members of the NGO educate the rural folks about the use of sanitary napkins and maintaining a proper menstrual hygiene. It was added that the NGO has also started its own sanitary napkin production centre named Shrimoyee, which produce napkins at a very low cost.
Apart from that, the NGO is also involved in conducting many health awareness camps relating to hypertension, blood donation etc.