Cancer Crusaders Club: Why I Formed It?
Reynaldo O. Joson, MD
In 1988, I formed the Cancer Crusaders Club. There were several reasons why I decided to form this Club.
The foremost reason was that I saw the need for such a club. I needed such a club to help me in the comprehensive management of my cancer patients.
Treatment of cancer consists of two inseparable parts. Theses are the treatment of cancer itself and the management of the person who has been afflicted with cancer. The surgery, chemotherapy, radiotherapy, and other standard types of cancer treatment that I have been administering to my cancer patients constitute only one part of the treatment. I still need the other part of treatment, which is as important as the first part. Through the Cancer Crusaders Club, I intend to administer psychosocial therapy on my cancer patients.
Since 1988, there has been a yearly Christmas get-together party of the Cancer Crusaders Club. The annual get-together is held on every first Sunday of December.
In 1988, 54 crusaders attended the affair. In 1989, only 34 crusaders were able to attend because of the coup d’etat. In 1990, 70 attended. This was the largest attendance so far.
The Annual Christmas Get-Together has always been a special day for those cancer patients who attended. It is a reunion for those who were present during the previous years. It is a day of sharing experiences. It is a day of helping each other. It is a day that the cancer patients realize that they are not alone who are afflicted with cancer. The end-effect is that the Annual Christmas Get-Together is a booster of morale and hope for the cancer patients to live on.
I was the one who gave the name Cancer Crusaders Club. I decided to use the word “cancer” inspite of its frightening effect. I wanted the members to accept that once they had cancers. I believe this is an essential step in the psychotherapy of these patients.
I used the word “crusaders” not only to describe the main purpose of the club, which is, to fight against cancer, but also to include for membership purpose, persons not afflicted with cancer yet and who want to join in the fight against cancer. Thus, the club is not limited only to cancer patients.
I myself am a member of the Cancer Crusaders Club. I have no evident cancer at the moment. I am helping people fight against cancer. That makes me a Cancer Crusader.
Beside the happiness and satisfaction that I am getting from helping cancer patients through the Cancer Crusaders Club, I want to confess that I have one ulterior motive, that of preparing myself in case I develop a cancer in the future. I am learning a lot from the patients who have cancers and who are cancer crusaders. I admire them. They are real cancer crusaders. Actually, with the Cancer Crusaders Club, I am also paying tribute to these extraordinary cancer patients.