APIA: TUESDAY 23 OCTOBER 2012: The Prime Minister Tuilaepa Lupesoliai Sailele Malielegaoi is shaving his hair later this afternoon for cancer awareness and support for the fight against cancer.
He made the unprecedented offer at the Samoa Cancer Society’s BlueSky Shave It or Save It fundraiser on 13 October at the Y-Not Bar, when 26 men and two women sacrificed their crowning glory in the interests of reducing the spread of the cancer scourge in Samoa. The volunteers included Samoa Cancer Society President, Leiataualesa Daryl Clarke and Vice President, Leituala Dr Ben Matalavea.
The Prime Minister has just been back home after a visit to New Zealand and Australia hence that delayed his offer to have his hair shaved for the cancer cause. The lack of public awareness is the major problem with victims finding out too late when earlier detection could have saved their lives.
Leiataualesa Daryl Clarke said “The Prime Minister has been a consistent and strong supporter of the Cancer Society’s work. Where we have asked for his support, he has always given it and for which we have been deeply grateful. This unexpected offer is therefore a tremendous statement of his personal commitment to the fight against cancer and reflects the support he has so consistently shown over the years. The amazing support from all of our sponsors has already gone far beyond our expectations. Their generous donations will provide the Cancer Society with a strong base to assure its longer term viability.”
Clarke explained, “Our Society will use these funds with great care, to expand our education programme for community members about understanding the risks and symptoms of cancer, so that they can make lifestyle changes and act fast if early indications appear. The funds will also help us to support and guide cancer patients and their families from our Cancer Resource Centre at Moto’otua beside the new hospital.”
The Centre offers resources for health professionals and the general public. It is open 9am to 4pm Monday to Friday. The phone numbers are 23 984 and 29 813.