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Ten years ago, the VIVA Foundation for Children with Cancer was established to ensure children with cancer will have an opportunity to be healed and hence find a new lease of life.

With that simple mission, the VIVA Foundation was birthed.

Like a child, the foundation grew. And to this date, the St Jude VIVA Forum is proud to celebrate its 10th series of lectures and seminars on pediatric oncology, to an even larger attendance. A total of 250 delegates from Australia, Bangladesh, Brunei , Cambodia, China, Denmark, Germany, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Myanmar, The Netherlands, Philippines, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, Thailand, United Kingdom, USA and Vietnam.

The forum shared protocols and ways of treating children with cancer, experts discussed in small group settings in-depth and specific issues regarding their methods, as well as other components involving the total care of a child with cancer which included a family workshop and a nursing symposium.

This year, the forum had the honour of inviting in its presence the Ambassadors of Cambodia, China and India. Forum delegates from these countries had the opportunity to present themselves to their respective country’s representative in Singapore.

Another highlight during the forum was the launch of the $8million VIVA-NUS CenTRAL (Centre for Translational Research in Acute Leukemia). The research centre will boost research for childhood acute leukemia in Singapore. It seeks to improve cure rates and quality of life of children with leukemia through more accurate disease classification, prediction and determination of treatment response, done using cutting-edge laboratory techniques, as well as new and more effective tests.

Before the main forum at the Shangri-La Hotel, Singapore, pre-forum workshops were conducted at the National University Hospital of Singapore (NUHS). These workshops, dedicated to regional delegates from developing countries, were set in a smaller group size, allowing delegates to discuss topics such as treatment, data management and evaluation of outcomes of solid tumors and leukemia, as well as updates on participating centres and their research papers. There were a total of 84 delegates attending the pre-forum workshop.

Another component added to the intensive schedule was a one-day Nursing Symposium. This allowed nurses from Singapore and the region, especially those working in pediatric oncology wards to learn about the topics presented at the forum. A break-out session allowed the delegates hands-on experience at KK Hospital’s simulation center.

Future Plans

Next year, the St Jude VIVA Forum will take place on 4 and 5 March 2017, with the Pre-forum to be held on 2 and 3 March and the Nursing Symposium on 6 March.

In order for the forum to find the greater success, plans are in place to seek sponsorship and support for the forum. If you should be able to help in one way or another, please contact VIVA Foundation for more details.

Let us believe together that – "No child should die in the dawn of their lives."(Danny Thomas)

Every child deserves a future.

(For more photos from the event, please visit https://www.facebook.com/VivaFoundation/)