….Recruits Volunteers From Around the World, Headquarters to be in Canada
Efforts to establish a body comprising sickle cell patients (‘Warriors’), families and caregivers from around the world are in the pipeline and slated to take off before the end of 2020.
Yet unnamed, the association will be fashioned on the lines of the Global Sickle Cell Disease Network, a coalition of sickle cell medical professionals and specialists with Headquarters in Canada, headed by Professor Isaac Odame.
Meanwhile, regional heads and volunteers are being recruited from around the world. They will mainly be persons living with SCD and SCD advocates who may or may not live with the condition.
The idea of having a global organization for SCD patients – or Warriors as they are now called – has been muted for some years. Dr. Mrs. Gloria Odesina in 2008 established the Global Sickle Cell Alliance (GLOSCA) with offices in the USA and Nigeria. A few years later, a consortium of international medical specialists, among them Prof Kwaku Ohene Frempong (KOF), sought to establish a continental network of patients and caregivers – none of them, including the West African Sickle Cell Disease Network, is active to date.
Seasoned administrator and haematology Professor (Mrs.) Adeyinka Falusi Prof Falusi, FAS, L’Oreal/UNESCO Laureate is the Executive Director and President of the Sickle Cell Hope Alive Foundation, an organization versatile in both rural and urban SCD enlightenment in Nigeria. She has this to say about the proposed body for SCD ‘Warriors’ around the world:
‘A global sickle cell body is the right way to go. Regional institutions, functional NGOs within the countries and community of ‘Warriors’ in urban and rural settings need to work together to generate the right approach to combat SCD globally.
‘Nigeria, which bears the largest burden of SCD globally should be adequately represented in this arrangement.’
In a statement on his blog presaging the proposed global sickle cell body, Pastor Emmanuel Dickson Ibekwe, Chairman, Board of Trustees, Dabma Sickle Cell Foundation, Lagos, Nigeria said –
‘‘It is time to have an International Federation of Sickle Cell Anaemia, where all the associations of SCA in the world can brainstorm to find solutions to this genetic monster’
‘‘It is time to have an International Federation of Sickle Cell Anaemia, where all the associations of SCA in the world can brainstorm to find solutions to this genetic monster’Pastor Emmanuel Dickson Ibekwe, Dabma Sickle Cell Foundation, Lagos, Nigeria