Sheikha Jawaher listens to Shaukat Khanum Memorial Cancer Hospital and Research Centre officials in Lahore.
Gulf Today, Staff Reporter
Following the directives of Her Highness Sheikha Jawaher Bint Mohammed Al Qasimi, Wife of His Highness the Ruler of Sharjah, Chairperson of The Big Heart Foundation (TBHF), and Founder and Royal Patron of the Friends Of Cancer Patients (FOCP), the Ameera Fund, a global fund run collaboratively by FOCP and TBHF, has announced the allocation of Dhs4.4 million for the procurement of state-of-the-art medical equipment to facilitate the commencement of surgical oncology services at the Shaukat Khanum Memorial Cancer Hospital and Research Centre (SKMCH&RC) in Peshawar, Pakistan.
Around 2,500 cancer patients will benefit from access to a wide range of high-quality surgical treatment options at two fully equipped operating rooms fitted out with financial assistance from the Ameera Fund. The contribution aims to support the leading humanitarian efforts of the Shaukat Khanum Hospital & Research Center in Peshawar by helping to enhance the facility’s overall capacity to offer specialised care to more patients, especially in the surgical field, and furthers the hospital’s goal of offering financial support to 75 per cent of its patients.
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The collaboration follows Her Highness Sheikha Jawaher’s visit to Pakistan in February this year when she met with several humanitarian organisations including the SKMCH&RC in Lahore.
Commenting on FOCP’s role in paving the way for the enhancement of surgical oncology services at SKMCH&RC, Her Excellency Sawsan Jafar, Chairperson of FOCP’s Board of Directors, confirmed that the efforts of Her Highness Sheikha Jawaher Al Qasimi in driving an effective global humanitarian response and delivering sustainable healthcare projects stems from the values of responsible giving ingrained in our socially conscious Emirati society.
Her Excellency Sawsan Jafar added that the project would contribute to supporting the noble endeavors of SKMCH&RC, and enhances its capabilities to offer high-quality cancer surgery to thousands of patients annually. The project, she added, also reflects the integrated efforts of Sharjah’s humanitarian institutions like FOCP and TBHF to identify and support various social needs outside the UAE.
Maryam Al Hammadi, Director of TBHF, pointed to the importance of cooperation between all Sharjah institutions in order to implement humanitarian development projects that have a sustainable impact on societies around the world, as well as establishes the foundations of strong cross-cultural human relations.
She added: “TBHF continues to provide support and assistance to communities around the world, under the guidance and leadership of Her Highness Sheikha Jawaher Al Qasimi, Wife of His Highness the Ruler of Sharjah. Our efforts stem from our commitment to guaranteeing the basic human rights of individuals, no matter their gender, age, socioeconomic backgrounds, nationality, or faith.”
Dr Faisal Sultan, CEO of the Shaukat Khanum Memorial Cancer Hospital & Research Centre (SKMCH&RC), on behalf of the hospital management, expressed gratitude for the contribution by the Ameera Fund. He pointed out that the donation would take the centre a step forward towards its goal of alleviating the suffering of cancer patients and fulfilling their healthcare needs.
“Shaukat Khanum Memorial Cancer Hospital and Research Centre, Peshawar represents a window of hope to tens of thousands of cancer patients in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province and across other parts of Pakistan, particularly low-income patients who cannot afford to pay for the treatment. We consider every contribution, no matter how big or small, as a step forward to fostering the vision on which the hospital was established, while offering hope to our patients,” he added.
The Ameera Fund targets cancer care at a global scale through collaborative projects in the fields of cancer research, capacity building, prevention, and treatment.
The Fund was launched by Her Highness Sheikha Jawaher Al Qasimi to honour the contributions of the late humanitarian activist, Ameera BinKaram, in supporting cancer patients in the UAE and abroad. In her lifetime, Ameera BinKaram held several key leadership positions including President of the Board of Trustees and Founding Member of FOCP, Chairperson of the Sharjah Women´s Business Council, and Vice-Chairperson of NAMA Women Advancement Establishment.
The Shaukat Khanum Memorial Cancer Hospital & Research Centre was instituted in 1994 by Imran Khan, current Prime Minister of Pakistan, and former cricket captain, in memory of his mother, Shaukat Khanum, who he lost to cancer. The charitable organisation came into being following a series of fund-raising campaigns held during international cricket matches.
TBHF’s funding, which amounts to more than US$1 million will be utilised to support the nation’s educational infrastructure and enabling access to a larger number of children and youth.
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