All Youth Against Cancer (AYAC)


The AYAC is an initiative of BWS which was unveiled in February 2011. Apart from the need for BWS to have an established volunteer structure away from the BWS/NYSC cancer prevention advocacy initiative, AYAC was formed based on the need for a sort of ‘extension’ of the BWS/NYSC cancer prevention advocacy initiative. Most BWS youth corpers, after their one-year term as BWS/NYSC cancer prevention advocates are usually still willing to volunteer as cancer control advocates. Hence, this initiative was formed to ensure Nigerian youths still have the opportunity to volunteer as cancer control advocates under the NGO. One of the activities held by this initiative is hosting an annual World Cancer Day Youth Jamboree (WCDYJ) on February 4, being World Cancer Day. The aim of the one-day event is to raise awareness of the preventability of cancers and other non-communicable diseases (diabetes, chronic lung diseases and heart diseases) with shared risk factors (exposure to tobacco smoke, excessive alcohol consumption, unhealthy diet and physical inactivity) among Nigerian youths who for the most part have poor knowledge about these diseases and go about their normal lives without seeking to reduce their exposure to these known risk factors.

World Cancer Day Youth Jamboree 2015

The 2015 WCDYJ will be celebrated under the UICC-chosen global tagline of ‘not beyond us’. However, the subtheme peculiar to the WCDYJ 2015 in Nigeria will be ‘Truth and Lies About the Cervical Cancer Vaccination’ as a way of further encouraging uptake and public awareness of the cervical cancer vaccination  among school-aged children in Nigeria. The event will be held on Wednesday, February 4th in the Indoor Sports Hall of the National Stadium Surulere, Lagos. Highlights of the event will include musical performance by ace Nigerian Musicians, educational games, true-stories from parents who have vaccinated their children against cervical cancer, drama competition among private Secondary Schools in Lagos State, competition among Tertiary institutions including University of Lagos, Yaba College of Technology, Tai Solarin College of Education and the Lagos State University. The target audience primarily will be 2000 youths consisting of students from  private secondary schools in Lagos State, Students from tertiary institutions in Lagos State including University of Lagos (UNILAG), Yaba College of Technology, Tai Solarin College of Education and the Lagos State University (LASU), Faith-based Organizations, the Nigerian media and the general public.

The ‘Journalist Cancer Control Advocate’ 2015 will also be awarded at the event. Entries for the award will open to the Nigerian media in January 2015.

The 2015 event promises to be even more loaded with exciting, thrilling and captivating activities as there will be a lot to drink, eat and win!!! More information will be unveiled in coming weeks.

World Cancer Day Youth Jamboree 2014

The 2014 WCDYJ was a press conference that was held at the Medilag Alumni Centre, College of Medicine, University of Lagos, Idi-Araba on February 4, 2014.

This World Cancer Day Youth Jamboree 2014 press conference was called to:

  • Inform the press of the newly revised world cancer declaration which was launched at the World Cancer Leaders Summit held in Capetown, South Africa in November 2013
  • Inform the press of the World Cancer Day 2014 theme-‘debunk the myths’ and to encourage them to publish the evidence-based facts and truths about these myths in order to increase awareness among the Nigerian populace
  • Inform the press of BWS’s latest initiative intended to meet two of the nine targets contained in the revised world cancer declaration targets
  • Inform the press of BWS’s initiative called ‘journalist cancer control advocate of the year’, an initiative intended to encourage increased cancer control advocacy on the part of Nigerian journalists and media organizations.

Overall, 13 (Thirteen) media organizations including Punch, The Nation, Guardian, Thisday, Vanguard, The Sun, Champion, Leadership, New Telegraph, National Daily, The Union Newspapers, News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), Radio Nigeria and UNILAG FM.

About 12 (Twelve) major stakeholders including the Chairman, Nigerian Medical Association (NMA), Lagos State Chapter, President, Association of Resident Doctors, Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH), Princess Mma Agwuna- R.A.A.W.O and Princess Flora Dania of  Women and Youths Network were also present.

The WCDYJ 2014 press conference was sponsored by the International Cancer Week (ICW) initiative under the leadership of Dr Rahmatu Hassan- Director, National Cancer Control Plan, Nigeria. Other partners include Thrive Signature.

Venue support by: The Provost, College of Medicine, University of Lagos, Idi-Araba

Sound provided: Cogito Ergo Sum Ltd.

DSC_0158    Dr Faduyile, NMA Chairman, Lagos state addressing the press  Ms James, National Coordinator of BWS addressing the press  DSC_0183 A cross section of attendees at the press conference

The event was subsequently reported in major print and electronic media across Nigeria:


Guardian Newspaper of February 15,2014. Pg 12  National Daily Newspaper of Feb 10-14, 2014. Pg 36  The Nation Newspaper of Feb 6,2014. Pg 6  Vanguard Newspaper of Feb 17,2014. Pg 44


World Cancer Day Youth Jamboree 2013

The 2013 WCDYJ was held by BWS in partnership with Initiative for Community Development (ICD). The event took place on Saturday, February 2nd, 2013 in the Indoor Sports Hall of the National Stadium, Surulere, Lagos, Nigeria. The global theme for the year as decided by the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC) was ‘dispel myths and misconceptions about cancer’ and BWS decided to make the 2013 event a  ‘panel discussion’ in which a panel of experts (Professor of Radiology, Public Health Nutritionist, Physiotherapist, Public Health tobacco control activist and Gynaecologist) took turns to answer questions about cancer and its risk factors which were sent in by youths via facebook, sms and e-mail.  Award-winning Nigerian musicians- DJ Zeez was the main act of the day and he was joined by upcoming Musicians- G-Mak and Y-storm who kept the youths excited as they learnt about cancer, danced and celebrated the control of cancer in Nigeria. Free breast cancer screening (CBE) was conducted and twenty four (24) media houses, including print media were present to cover the event, the Minister of Health sent a representative. The event was reported in network news on various TV and radio stations in Nigeria between Sunday, February 3rd and Wednesday, 6th 2013. Tecno Mobile donated free T-shirts and gift items to all the youths, Glaxosmithklime donated Ribena drinks, Pathcare conducted free blood sugar and blood pressure screening, Other partners and sponsors include Bone Marrow Registry in Nigeria, Inspire2live, MTN, Vovi Beauty products, Cogito Ergo Sum, Synergy Healthcare and

DSC_0198DSC_0305    DSC_0396   IMG_1965   DSC_0742


World Cancer Day Youth Jamboree 2012

Activities to mark the World Cancer Day youth jamboree 2012 kicked off with a press conference on Thursday, February 2nd, 2012. About 17 media houses (including reporters from UNILAG FM, Rhythm FM, The Sun Newspaper, Vanguard Newspaper, NTA, AIT News, Radio Nigeria, Superscreen Television, Guardian Newspaper, National Daily etc) were in attendance at the press conference. The discussants at the press conference included Dr Anthonia Sowunmi, a Radiation Oncologist in LUTH, Ms Funmilola James, the National Coordinator of BWS, Dr Gbenga Adetola, a BWS cancer advocate, Mr Victor Adebamiro, Radiotherapy Student and BWS cancer advocate and Mr Wahab Bukola, the President of BWS youth corpers 2011/2012 in Lagos.

The World Cancer Day youth jamboree 2012 was held in the Indoor Sports Hall of the National Stadium, Surulere, Lagos on Saturday, February 4th, 2012. The theme of the event was ‘Together it is possible’.  The event had over one thousand youths in attendance, Free T-shirts and face caps were donated to the youths by Norvatis, Nestle Milo and Ranona foods gave refreshments at the event. Tantis Bakery, Allen & Fifth, Ribena and were other sponsors of the World Cancer Day youth jamboree 2012.


The 2012 event saw Seasoned health professionals such as Prof. Ifeoma Okoye, a Professor of Radiology, University of Nigeria, Nsukka and President of BWS, Dr Lanre Onigbogi, a Consultant Public Health and tobacco prevention advocate in the College of Medicine, University of Lagos, Ms Ummukulthoum Bakare, a board certified Physiotherapist from the Physiotherapy Department in LUTH, who spoke to the youths about physical fitness as a way of preventing cancer and other non-communicable diseases. Dr John Egbuta, a Consultant Public Health Nutritionist and former UNICEF Nutrition Specialist educated the youths about diets that cause cancer and those that reduce the risks of cancer. Ms Olabisi Bokini, a bone marrow donor spoke about her experience as a bone marrow donor and the possibility of bone marrow to save lives of Africans diagnosed with blood lymphomas and cancers. Nigerian Radio presenter of the year, Lolo 1 of Wazobia FM was MC, Nigerian Musicians such as El-prince, Sabi, G-Mak and Slick Joe also graced the event and supported the youths. 107 youths consented to free clinical Breast Examination and 7 were positive for breast lumps and have since been referred and followed up on. Of the over 1000 youths that attended the World Cancer Day youth jamboree 2012, 57% were between the ages of 10 and 29 years, with mean age being 27.85 years. Overall, 41.4% of the participants were students, 60.2% were male and 74.1% were attending the World Cancer Day youth jamboree 2012 for the first time. The World Cancer day youth jamboree 2012 was subsequently reported in the following newspapers:

Business Hallmark-February 6-12, 2012, Page 48

Nigerian Compass- February 10, 2012, Page 21

Punch Newspaper- February 22, 2012, Page 56

Saturday Guardian- February 11, 2012, Page 36

World Cancer Day Youth Jamboree 2011

The World Cancer Day Youth jamboree (WCDYJ) 2011 was held in the Gymnasium Hall of the National Stadium, Surulere, Lagos, Nigeria on the 4th of February 2011. The event, which had over 700 youths in attendance and was compered by the ever entertaining Lolo of Wazobia FM commenced around 12 noon with an opening prayer by the President of Breast Without Spot (BWS), International Cancer Week (ICW), Prof. Ifeoma Okoye followed by a welcome speech by the coordinator of the WCD youth jamboree, Ms Funmilola James.

The First speaker or the day was Prof Ifeoma Okoye, who spoke explicitly on the various lifestyle choices youths can make to cut down their risks of having cancer by 40% as proved by UICC. She gave examples of foods to eat and those to avoid, emphasized the relevance of vegetables and even went further to teach the best way to cook our local Nigerian foods and still preserve all the nutrients.

Dr Idris Omede, the president of Nigerian Medical Association spoke on healthy lifestyle choices that reduce risks of having cancer.

Mr Eze Eluchie esq, a tobacco activist, encouraged the youths to stay positive mentally, he emphasized the effects tobacco had on the body and the environment and its main contribution to causing cancer.

Mr Jake Epelle president of the Albino Foundation spoke on the need to avoid sun exposure, use sunscreens and live healthy lifestyles to stay ‘cancer free’.

Representative of the Hon. Minister of Women Affairs encouraged the youths and encouraged them to recognize that cancer is an issue that can be dealt with at this young stage of life.

Prof. JTK Duncan, the first Radiologist/Oncologist in Nigeria spoke on what cancer is, how it occurs, causes and prevention. He went further to introduce himself as a perfect example of an 80-year old man who had made healthy choices and still agile enough to be practising medicine. He encouraged the youths to choose healthy lifestyle options to guarantee sound health even at old age.

Ituah Ighodalo, the Senior Pastor of Trinity House motivated the youths to believe in their abilities and to confess positively into their future.

Dr Bunmi Omoseyindemi, The Chairman of the Lagos State Traditional Medicine Board emphasized the relevance of fruits and the role local fruits play in prevention of cancer. He encouraged the youths to include fruits in their diet in order to reduce their chances of having cancer in the future.

Free Clinical Breast Examination, to screen for breast cancer was conducted at the event. Of the 248 women and 2 men who consented to screening, 23 women and 1 man between the ages of 17 and 61 years old screened positive for breast lump and other breast anomalies. They have since been referred and followed up on.

Various Nigerian musicians such as Obiora Obiwon, Waje, Djinee, Benita, Babylish and other upcoming artistes joined the Nigerian youths to create awareness of cancer on World Cancer Day 2011. They sang and even dedicated songs to the youths. Djinee gave down-to-earth talk about his personal lives away from the ‘celebrity outlook’. He let the youths in on some of the healthy choices he as a celebrity makes to reduce his risks of cancer and encouraged the youths to emulate such healthy lifestyle options as a way of reducing their risks of cancer.


The ever hilarious Lolo of Wazobia FM kept the audience entertained. Games such as ‘what do you know about cancer’ in which the audience were asked various questions about cancer kept the participants asking for more as winners were rewarded with prizes from Cadbury Bournvita, Sleek Makeup and Vovi Beauty Products. Refreshments were served by Cadbury Bournvita and Ranona foods Ltd, makers of fresh fruit juice. Free Breast Self Examination DVDs donated by Healthy Images were also given to all participants.

The World Cancer Day youth jamboree, the first of its kind, did meet the objectives for which it was organized. The event will be a yearly one where youths from all works of life can come together and be informed on ways to cut down their risks of cancer and other Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs).

The event was subsequently reported in the network news, Vanguard newspaper and Daily Champion. The President of BWS, Prof Ifeoma Okoye was featured in Thisday Style and Glamour magazines.