How Patients and Survivors Are Closing the Care Gap on World Cancer Day and Beyond


In honor of World Cancer Day, we asked our readers what they do to raise funds and awareness since being diagnosed.

Feb. 4 is World Cancer Day, a global initiative led by the Union for International Cancer Control to raise awareness and education around the disease to improve outcomes and save lives worldwide.

The 2022-2024 theme for World Cancer Day is “Close the Care Gap,” which focuses on decreasing inequities and taking action to make a positive difference for those with the disease.

In honor of World Cancer Day on Feb. 4, what are you doing to raise funds or awareness since being diagnosed?

In honor of World Cancer Day and closing the care gap, we asked patients and survivors: What have you done to raise funds or awareness since being diagnosed? Here’s what they had to say:

“I am a member of the Cancer Policy & Advocacy Team through (the National Coalition for Cancer Survivorship) and have helped raise awareness for policies and legislation addressing issues around Survivorship. I also am a physical therapist assistant who specializes in lymphedema and oncology rehab, and I continue to advocate for my patients in any way I can to help with side effects from cancer treatments, to improve quality of life and reduce risk of recurrence.” — Cora F., a breast cancer survivor

“I have both raised funds for and been on the board of directors for Sy's Fund. I’ve volunteered for The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society and American Cancer Society as well as raising funds for both. I have spread awareness and helped newly diagnosed warriors find information and funding for transportation and treatment. I have participated in a few studies as well. One day I hope there is an end.” — Jamie

“I served as state lead volunteer for the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network for more than seven years. I’m an ambassador for Fight Colorectal Cancer and an advocacy volunteer for the National Coalition for Cancer Survivorship. I have been an advocate peer reviewer for the Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas and the Congressionally Directed Medical Research Program. And I’ve raised at least $100,000 over the years for ACS, ACS CAN, Fight CRC and others.” — Michael H.

“I have run a dozen races and provided my services free-of-charge to raise more than $12,000 for cancer research, volunteered for a cancer charity, helped provide information and support to newly diagnosed individuals and provide information about cancer on my social media page throughout the year.” — Vanessa R.

“I started a foundation to focus awareness on the successes of immunotherapy clinical trials for the treatment of breast cancer. A revolution in cancer treatment is building and I think people should know about it and be able to understand the science so they can choose the clinical trials that might work best for them.” — the founder of North Star Cancer Advocacy

However, some people acknowledged that facing cancer was a difficult task in itself, without added pressure or responsibility of raising funds or awareness.

“Why do cancer patients have to raise money? Cancer is hard enough without being guilted into raising money for nonprofits.” — April K., a breast cancer survivor

READ MORE: Are You ‘Wasting’ Your Cancer?

“Nothing, to be honest. Surviving has been hard enough. Are you asking me to recruit? It’s already personal, and then to put myself out there, no thanks.” — Jeff M.

“Surviving treatments! Not much I can manage right now!” — Becky J.

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