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Postal stamp celebrates anniversary of cancer-stricken children’s shelter

31 Jan 2021

Oman Cancer Association’s landmark project Dar al Hanan (Home away from home), which serves the needs of children with cancer who reside away from the capital, is celebrating its tenth anniversary. 

To mark the occasion, a postal stamp (RO1) was launched by H E Dr Ahmed bin Mohammed bin Obaid al Sa’eedi, Minister of Health. Yuthar al Rawahi, founder of Oman Cancer Association (OCA), said, “For the past ten years, Dar al Hanan has been the second home for children fighting cancer, who come from all other parts of Oman and stay with their families while taking treatment at The Royal Hospital.” 

She said it took a year to iron out difficulties and convince others and deal with the logistics. 

“This is something unique for Dar al Hanan to be on the stamp.” 

Yuthar added that the next dream for Dar al Hanan is to have its own purpose built building. “That is my next wish. It has been 20 years since Oman Cancer Association has been functioning in rented buildings. A major share of funds is spent on rent.”

The number of patients who have benefitted from Dar al Hanan is 538 since 2011, and the number of relatives is 1,076. The number of residents per year stands at 17,280 and number of meals served is 51,849. 

All nationalities have benefitted from Dar al Hanan over the years. The stay, meals and even the laundry are taken care of throughout the duration of their treatment.

The total annual expenditure is RO425,000 and it is covered by a number of direct and indirect donors.

On the occasion, Dr Wahid al Kharousi, chairman of OCA, said, “Cancer is one of the most expensive diseases to manage, especially if it is left unnoticed due to lack of awareness and late diagnosis. Cancers pose socio-economic and legal challenges and negatively impact a country’s GDP.”

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