Waterford unite in tribute to cancer community in Ireland

Justin Kelly

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Justin Kelly

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news@waterfordlive.ie

Waterford unite in tribute to cancer community in Ireland

Waterford unite in tribute to cancer community in Ireland

More than 300 singers will gather in University College Dublin in a community tribute to those whose lives have been touched by cancer. ‘Choirs for Cancer’ brings together cancer patients, advocates, survivors and family members to share the story of their cancer journey. 

Two Waterford choirs will take part. They are the Mount Sion School Choir and the Solas Cancer Support Centre choir. Cancer researchers will also speak of their motivation and progress towards finding new ways to prevent, diagnose and treat this devastating disease.

These stories will be interspersed with inspirational songs by 10 choirs from across the island of Ireland, many linked with cancer support centres or cancer fundraising efforts. RTE broadcaster, Miriam O'Callaghan will host the event. ‘Choirs for Cancer’ will recognise the tireless work of patient advocates around Ireland, including cervical cancer campaigner and recently crowned ‘Cork Person of the Year’, Stephen Teap.

Commenting ahead of the event, Stephen said, “I’m delighted to be involved in ‘Choirs for Cancer’ for the second year running. This event really celebrates the power of community and how patients can make a difference. We can all play a role in changing cancer care in Ireland for the better”. Stephen lost his wife Irene to cervical cancer in 2017 after two cervical smears were misread. He has since campaigned for improved cervical screening procedures, to prevent this happening to any other women in Ireland.

Organiser Prof. William Gallagher, Deputy Director of Precision Oncology Ireland said, “The ‘Choirs for Cancer 2020’ event provides a fantastic opportunity for those impacted by cancer to tell their story, and for their collective voice to be heard. I am delighted that we will have participants from all over the country, including school children and young adults, cancer patients and their families, cancer support groups, as well as the cancer research community.”

There will be uplifting songs and performances from singers and choirs including Mount Sion School Choir from Co. Waterford; the ARC Dublin ‘ARC Angels’ choir; the Healthy Harmony choir from Ennis; singer-songwriter Hermione Hennessy; and Sing for Life Choir, Cancer Focus Northern Ireland. Each choir will sing a song with a special meaning to them on the themes of care, hope, strength, love, loss and community, followed by a combined choral performance of ‘Something Inside So Strong’.

One in two people in Ireland today will develop cancer during their lifetime. This cancer awareness event coincides with the 20th anniversary of World Cancer Day. The theme of World Cancer Day is 'I Am and I Will' – a statement of who you are and what is your personal commitment to act. It is a powerful reminder that we all have a role to play in reducing the global impact of cancer.

‘Choirs for Cancer’ is jointly organised by Precision Oncology Ireland and The Patient Voice in Cancer Research. The event is open to the public. Tickets are free and are available at: www.eventbrite.ie