PHOTOS: Lagos Residents Join ESIF to Walk for Endometriosis
By Adedapo Adesanya
As part of efforts to raise awareness for endometriosis, Lagos-based EndoSurvivors International Foundation (ESIF) kicked off a 3-kilometre walk and 7-kilometre cycling campaign on Saturday, March 12.
The NGO had earlier announced a series of events to mark Endometriosis Awareness Month and yesterday, it held the walk and cycling campaign from the Johnson Jakande Tinubu (JJT) Park in Ikeja, Lagos.
Tagged Cycle/Walk4Endo, participants reached more than 2,000 people through the distribution of fliers and one-on-one engagement with Lagosians.
Speaking on the event, the founder of ESIF, Mrs Olivia Nwankudu said, “It is good to see the number of people who came out to raise awareness on endometriosis. I believe that through this coordinated effort, we have made a difference.
“A lot of people are passionate about endometriosis and some don’t even know about it, we hope through this walk and cycling experience we are not only able to pique their interests but also educate and change their mindset about it.
“It is important that people be educated about this disease. They should know that it is not a death sentence. Yes, it is a common disease that affects more than 2 per cent of Nigerian women but it can be managed.”
Adding her input, Ms Oluwafikayomi Ooju, the Executive Director at NovaDiamond Foundation noted – “One of our key priorities at this foundation is women’s health and one of the diseases that affect women is endometriosis, we partake in movements like these to see how we can combat them early through awareness, advocacy, and partnerships.
“For the Endo Awareness Day today, we are seeing how we can join our voices with ESIF to ensure that the awareness reaches every nook and cranny that it needs to reach. We particularly work with women in the low-income communities in Nigeria so we think these are the kinds of information that can better the health of women and also society at large.”
A participant at the event, Miss Elizabeth Ogunwale remarked that “Participating in this has been a success. I feel refreshed that I have played my own little role in ensuring that we get the message across.
“I have learnt a lot including the cause, how to change one’s dietary behaviours and daily habits to accommodate a healthy lifestyle when one has this, and I laud the organisers for this.”
Women were also treated to free pelvic ultrasound, free consultation, and there was a range of side attractions including the provision of free T-shirts, refreshments, aerobics, dance and counselling for endometriosis patients.
ESIF has organized awareness outreaches to secondary schools in Lagos having reached over 6,000 adolescent girls with menstrual hygiene and endometriosis awareness lessons, distributed over 4,000 packs of sanitary pads, made donations to orphanages and much more.
March4Endo event continues later this month with the 4th Annual Symposium themed The Role of Imaging in Diagnosing Endometriosis which is scheduled to hold in the Main Auditorium of the Nigerian Institute of Medical Research (NIMR) on Thursday, March 24.
The UK Deputy High Commissioner, Mr Ben Llewellyn-Jones will be the Guest of Honour, while the Director-General of NIMR, Professor Babatunde Lawal Salako as the keynote speaker. Other distinguished experts in the field of gynaecology, radiology, sonography, nursing and general medicine are also expected to grace the event.
The walk for Endometriosis was supported by the Lagos State government, Nova Diamond Foundation, City Cyclers, Greenhouse Bikers, South Shore Hospital, a) EthnosIT Solutions, and 7UP Bottling Company.