BCAM Grant 2023, Direct Impact Foundation for Youth, raises bladder cancer awareness in Malawi’s rural areas
For the second consecutive year, the World Bladder Cancer Patient Coalition was thrilled to offer the Bladder Cancer Awareness Month Grants (BCAM Grant) for 2023. These grants empower patient organisations, support groups and advocacy entities in low and middle-income countries to raise awareness about bladder cancer within their communities.
This year, The Direct Impact Foundation for Youth (DIFY) from Malawi received one of our BCAM Grants. DIFY has made commendable efforts to promote bladder cancer awareness in their local community throughout the month of May.
DIFY initiated a bladder cancer awareness campaign within the Senior Group Village Headman Chavula area in the rural Nkhata Bay district of Malawi. The campaign centred on discussing symptoms of bladder cancer and strongly emphasised the significance of seeking medical attention when experiencing uncertainty about these symptoms.
«The BCAM grant offered by the World Bladder Cancer Patient Coalition was extremely helpful for us to run our Bladder Cancer awareness campaign in rural areas in Malawi. With the support of the BCAM Grant, we directly reached 500 people and touched the lives of over 2000 individuals in our community to empower them to take care of their health and to go get checked.
Steven Masoo, Project Coordinator of The Direct Impact Foundation for Youth.
Bladder cancer has a notable impact in Malawi, ranking as the 30th leading cause of death, according to the World Health Organisation (WHO). In 2020, this disease claimed the lives of around 388 people. Recognising the impact of bladder cancer, DIFY collaborated with local community structures and youth in Nkhata Bay District to align their efforts with the global bladder cancer awareness campaign.
With the support of BCAM Grants and the active engagement of the Nkhata Bay community, DIFY directly reached 500 people. They employed diverse approaches, including Focus Group Discussions, Health Talks, interviews, and engagement with youth through sports activities.
DIFY’s proactive awareness of bladder cancer awareness touched the lives of over 2000 people in rural Malawi through various engaging activities:
- Sports Engagement: DIFY utilised outdoor sports events to deliver bladder cancer awareness messages to the community.
- Youth Focus Groups: Feedback was gathered through youth focus group discussions, enabling a deeper understanding of bladder cancer concepts. Participants learned about global trends, local impact, symptoms, risk factors, and appropriate responses to uncertainties.
- Health Talks and Interviews: DIFY conducted informative health talks and interviews to educate communities about bladder cancer, emphasising prevention strategies and symptoms.
- Faith and Community Involvement: Collaborations with faith-based and community organisations, such as En Marriam Foundation, helped disseminate key bladder cancer messages.
- Youth through Sports: Sporting activities like football and netball were employed to engage youths and convey awareness messages. Football, in particular, attracted significant rural audiences, reaching over 2000 people.
By actively involving local communities and youth in Malawi in a variety of initiatives, DIFY successfully heightened awareness about bladder cancer symptoms and the importance of seeking timely medical attention. Their collaboration with global efforts, along with the support of BCAM Grants, significantly expanded the campaign’s reach. With over 2000 individuals impacted through these diverse activities, DIFY’s campaign stands as a notable example of effective community-driven health awareness in low-resource setting.
Download button: Bladder Cancer Awareness Month 2023 Report