Corporate Citizenship Report 2009

Impacting Key Issues

Supporting Women's Social Services

Saving Lives

A group of about 30 community representatives participating in a KanWork education session.

Photo courtesy of KanWork

A group of about 30 community representatives participating in a KanWork education session. These monthly sessions feature talks by health care professionals who share their knowledge and experience of cancer-related matters with attendees.

In Malaysia, breast cancer is the most common form of cancer in women from the age of 20 onward. Research studies show that a woman in Malaysia has a 1-in-19 chance of developing breast cancer in her lifetime. To promote breast cancer education and provide access to critical health information as well as a support network for these women, the Kanser Network Association, Selangor and Wilayah Persekutuan (KanWork) formed a partnership with Boeing in 2005.

Those affected by cancer frequently face a range of physical, psychological, social and economic challenges, in addition to ongoing concerns about the state of their health. Sufferers have to deal with these multiple issues from the time they are diagnosed through the remaining years of their lives. A strong support network is vital, especially for those who are poorly educated or illiterate as their access to health information and other resources is limited.

"The collaboration between Boeing and KanWork has helped to ensure that Malaysian women are aware of what they can do to reduce the risk of breast cancer and how regular check-ups can detect the disease at an early, treatable stage. It has also helped those affected by cancer to make informed decisions about diagnosis, treatment and wellness programs," said KanWork Founder and President Professor Mazanah Muhamad.

"Boeing is proud of its partnership with KanWork. For Malaysian women to be able to contribute to the economy of their communities, we must attack this significant and debilitating health risk," said Boeing Southeast Asia president Skip Boyce.

A core component of this effort was the establishment of the Cancer Resource and Education Center (CaRE). CaRE was opened with Boeing support. The center houses facilities that provide cancer information, education and support to those in need.

Cancer survivor Nor Aida Kamaruddin feels that CaRE fulfills a critical need for breast cancer sufferers in Malaysia.

"Boeing is proud of its partnership with KanWork. For Malaysian women to be able to contribute to the economy of their communities, we must attack this significant and debilitating health risk," said Boeing Southeast Asia president Skip Boyce.

KanWork project manager, Dr. Othman Omar provides an update on KanWork’s activities to Southeast Asia GCC focal Halina Ibrahim during one of her regular visits to the centre.

Photo: Aizat Rashid

KanWork project manager, Dr. Othman Omar provides an update on KanWork’s activities to Southeast Asia GCC focal Halina Ibrahim during one of her regular visits to the centre.

"CaRE is a good support resource for cancer patients. I have participated in CaRE's education programs and they are very responsive to sufferers' needs," she said. "I found it hard to get enough information on cancer from the hospital, and doctors there have a limited time for patients. But here at CaRE I have easy access to the information and support that I need, from being able to speak to the center's staff or to other cancer survivors."

Access to a wide range of cancer support and educational materials in different formats is another feature that sets the center apart from other organizations. "The educational materials such as booklets, brochures and factsheets have helped me to make decisions on my treatment and care. The materials also are available in various languages like Mandarin, which is easier for me to understand," said cancer survivor, Ms. Lau Soon Ching.

Boeing is currently in the process of working with KanWork to provide it with continued assistance under its Capacity Building Program III. The KanWork-Boeing partnership is the result of the company's Global Corporate Citizenship focus on health and human services to advance the economic well-being and health of vulnerable residents in communities around the globe.