International Childhood Cancer Day (ICCD) is annually observed across the globe on February 15 to raise awareness about childhood cancer and to express support for children and adolescents who have the disease, the survivors, and their families.
- The primary message or theme of International Childhood Cancer Day 2023 is ‘Better Survival’ is achievable #throughtheirhands.
The three-year campaign for ICCD (2021-2023) is designed to use the universal image of colourfully painted handprints of children to represent survival rates for children with cancer on a national, regional and international scale.
The 2023 theme is: #throughtheirhands
- The 2021 theme was: #throughourhands
- The 2022 ICCD theme is: #throughyourhands
The international awareness symbol for Childhood Cancer is the gold ribbon.
- It is the symbol for all forms of cancer affecting children and adolescents.
i. ICCD, a global campaign, was established in 2002 by Childhood Cancer International(CCI), a global network of 183 parent organizations, childhood cancer survivor associations, childhood cancer support groups, and cancer societies, in over 94 countries, across 5 continents.
ii. ICCD’s founding organisations are CCI and its collaborating partner, the International Society of Pediatric Oncologists, or Société Internationale d’Oncologie Pédiatrique (SIOP).
iii. The 1st ever International Childhood Cancer Day was observed on 15th February 2002.
ICCD 3-year Campaign (2021-2023) – Tree of life:
i. The campaign concept, ‘Tree of life’, for International Childhood Cancer Day began in 2021 and concludes in 2023.
ii. The “Tree of Life” campaign is based on the idea of using painted handprints of children to depict childhood cancer survival rates on an international, regional, and national level.
iii. The campaign is a part of the effort to reach the World Health Organization (WHO) Global Childhood Cancer Initiative’s target of at least 60% cancer-free survival rates for all children worldwide by 2030.
i. Any part of the body, including the blood and lymph node systems, the brain and spinal cord (central nervous system, or CNS), the kidneys, and other organs and tissues, can develop cancer in children.
ii. Every year, more than 400,000 kids and adolescents under 20 receive a cancer diagnosis.
- Only about 20–30% of those children survive, compared to more than 80% of high-income countries
WHO Global Childhood Cancer Initiative:
i. The WHO Global Initiative for Childhood Cancer aims to improve outcomes for children with cancer around the world.
ii. According to the WHO, more than 1,000 children are diagnosed with cancer each day.
iii. The three-year campaign for ICCD (2021-2023) is designed to align its messaging with the WHO #cureall strategy representing four pillars and three enablers.
About the World Health Organisation (WHO):
Director General- Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus
Headquarters- Geneva, Switzerland