E-poster Presentation 2014 World Cancer Congress

Youth against cancer in Kenya (#804)

Atilla A. Merdin 1 , Martin K. Kittony 1
  1. Youth Against Cancer in Kenya, Nairobi, Kenya

Background and Context:

Youth Against Cancer in Kenya (YACK) is a young organization that aims to create awareness about cancer among the youth.  The organization is founded by youth in the University. The current perception in most of the world and especially Africa, is that cancer is an “old man’s disease”, the “rich man’s disease. However this is not a reflection of the situation in Africa. An example closer to home in Kenya, many members of our youth have fallen victim of various types of cancer. With a significant number of families affected it has become evident that something needs to be done to change the current situation. With no known youth associated groups and no one to appeal to the youth, the youth are less conscience about the reality of cancer. Tackling this problem at youth level could also reduce the cancer rate in the old age.

Aim: Advocacy and creating awareness about cancer prevention among the youth in Kenya


Using modern technology and innovations like facebook, blogs, twitter, SMS text messages well as public fun events which are all very popular among the youths, youth can be made aware of cancer, causes of cancer, prevention and where to go for treatment if affected.  Empowered and knowledgeable youth can also become great ambassadors among their peers and older members of the community, taking messages to the family members. The highest number of smokers in Kenya is the youth. We hope this programs will reduce, if not eliminate tobacco use as well

Programme/Policy Process:

 This is a new initiative and It is hoped that YACK will lead to less cancer cases if they youth are empowered to minmise risk of developing adult cancers

Outcomes/What was learned: Youth are more receptive to campaigns organised by their peers