Carrera por la Vida, the Canarian foundation chaired by Brigitte Gypen, today one of the great pillars of solidarity against breast cancer in the Canary Islands, launches this weekend the initiative The path is the goal, a project that was born with the idea to consolidate in the coming years and that will take 32 people residing in the south of Tenerife to Galicia tomorrow to walk the Camino de Santiago.
Half of the expedition is made up of patients affected by the disease – some of them undergoing chemotherapy – and women who have overcome this pathology, in what is intended to be a message to make breast cancer survival visible, but also to raise awareness. about its prevention, complying with periodic appointments for mammograms, and demanding greater financial support for research into this disease that affects one in 12 women throughout their lives.
They will travel accompanied by some family members with the intention of traveling in a week, between this Sunday and next, the 120 kilometers of the so-called French Way, which connects Sarria, in the province of Lugo, with Santiago de Compostela, a route considered “gentle.” among walkers, although it presents some degree of difficulty in the section from Arzúa to O Pedrouzo, with 21 kilometers of unevenness and dirt roads.
A minibus will closely follow the expedition from beginning to end of the journey with the mission of assisting and transporting, if necessary, those people who experience the effort in any part of the way. In addition, a nursing assistant travels on the expedition to deal with possible mishaps.
On the other hand, an audiovisual team will record the experiences of the participants during the seven days and will collect their testimonies of struggle and overcoming the disease. These images will be part of a documentary that will soon be broadcast by Atlántico Televisión, the first regional private television channel in the Archipelago, from the Plató del Atlántico Group.
The slogan chosen for this initiative (The path is the goal) has been specially chosen by the promoters of this call, because it summarizes, they say, the mental predisposition recommended by experts to face any adversity in life, as in the case of an oncological disease.
“Getting to the beginning of the Camino de Santiago is already an achievement, regardless of what happens during the journey; “The fact of being at the starting point is already a merit after a diagnosis and oncological treatment,” Brigitte Gypen, who also learned about the disease years ago in first person and today is one of the great activists against it, told this newspaper. in Europe, as recognized by the Think Pink Europe movement, a network expanded across the continent to accelerate the exchange of information and improve healthcare and research.
“The fact of living together for a few days, sharing times and experiences, establishing links between people with cancer and also between their families and companions, is the true triumph of this path,” emphasized Gypen, who highlighted the success of the call and revealed the good expectations for next year, with a waiting list that already includes 12 people from different parts of the Island. The high demand has led the Canarian foundation to consider the possibility of doing the Camino de Santiago twice a year. The trip that this pilot project launches has aroused “enormous excitement” in the expedition that will leave tomorrow for Galicia. “The group chat on WhatsApp these days is wonderful and fills us all with energy,” confirmed the president of the Carrera por la Vida foundation, who will also travel with the group, like Herminia Tacoronte, coordinator of the activities of the organization. They have all been physically preparing for months to try to successfully complete the twenty kilometers of road that await them every day.
To this end, and in line with the promotion of healthy habits promoted by the foundation, they have participated in Nordic walking workshops, a physical activity in which canes are used specially designed to adapt to the way of walking and that promotes venous return and lymphatic circulation, which helps control inflammation in the arm affected by breast cancer. In addition, several experts have given workshops on the most appropriate equipment and footwear, as well as recommended practices along the way in order to ensure the best conditions for exercise.
The DIARIO DE AVISOS Foundation supports the initiative with the contribution of material and the dissemination of the documentary. The project also has the support of the Adeje City Council, which offers assistance support in terms of transport, and the Canarian company Viajes Guiatur, from Guía de Isora, in charge of designing the stages of the route adapting it to the profile of the participants.
The Carrera por la Vida Foundation highlights that this pilot project is, above all, a “meeting space between equals”, a “meeting forum to strengthen support”, but above all “a sign that breast cancer is beats”. The first step is to be aware that the path is part of the goal, as this group of wild boars through the Galician mountains will demonstrate in the coming days.