Wed | Aug 16, 2017

Don't fear cancer, fight it - Jarrett

Published:Monday | December 7, 2015 | 12:00 AM
Yulit Gordon (right), executive director of the Jamaica Cancer Society, and Earl Jarrett, chairman of the Jamaica Cancer Society, greet cancer survivor Denise Mullings during the society’s 60th anniversary church service at the Webster Memorial Church on Half-Way Tree Road in Kingston yesterday.

Even as the Jamaica Cancer Society celebrates 60 years of combating cancer in Jamaica, its chairman, Earl Jarrett, has signalled that the fight is far from over.

Speaking during a church service to mark the 60th anniversary celebration of the society, Jarrett said that "the mission is not yet done".

"There are many to whom the message about testing, early screening, and treatment has not found fertile soil, so we need to continue the work of educating people," he said.

According to Jarrett, the work of the society can be likened to that of the Church as it was formed to bring a message of hope and to improve the health outcomes and quality of life of people.

"The fact that the Cancer Society was formed during the Advent season speaks to the mission of hope that we have. Just like the Church, we were formed without much resources but have grown into a large organisation, but we began as small as a mustard seed," he added.

Jarrett further said that the Cancer Society takes its mission from the mission of Christ, a mission which, he says, is achieved through both word and action.

"We have carried out our mission by providing screening, testing, and support services, but we also share information through the publication of newsletters, pamphlets, and brochures."

With all of these outreach programmes, Jarrett is, however, still concerned that too many people are living in fear of cancer.

"People whisper about the big 'C' and fear to speak of it, but the society has shared a message of hope ... . Cancer is not a disease to be feared. It must be fought," he told the congregation at Webster Memorial United Church.

Jarrett lauded the staff and volunteers of the society, noting that the milestone of 60 years could not have been achieved without their hard work and dedication.