The One Dream One Wish association has offered €11.9 million to help children with cancer and related diseases over its 25 years of operation, the NGO’s chairman George Penintaex said on Tuesday.

Sending the message that cancer can be cured, the chairman listed the organisation’s donations over the years since it was founded in November 1997.

“Although it is a serious, life-threatening disease, it takes time and appropriate and specialised treatment… cancer does not mean death,” Penintaex said.

He explained that the association helps everyone in need regardless of national origin, skin colour, religion, economic and social status.

Of the €11,900,030 gathered with the help of sponsors, supporters and volunteers, some €4.4 million was given to financially support 4,111 children hospitalised in the haematology or oncology hospitals of Cyprus and travel abroad for examinations and treatments.

Another €1.67 million was provided to grant the wishes of 849 children with cancer and some €1.8 million for their participation in leisure trips in Cyprus and abroad. The association has also offered study grants, Easter and Christmas presents as well as birthday gifts. It also offers financial support to the families of children who die from cancer.

One Dream One Wish has also financed Karaiskakio Foundation with about €1.3 million.

Over €200,000 were also offered to Makarios children’s hospital, €50,000 for the Ronald McDonald house located opposite the hospital, which also gets an amount from the Ronald McDonald house in Berlin. Moreover, since 2020 the association is covering the annual operation costs of a room in the Arodafnousa palliative care centre.

Penintaex said the NGO contributes to the formulation of policies and strategies for cancer and especially for childhood cancer, by participating in meetings with competent stakeholders.

He was speaking at a press conference held at the Electricity Authority central offices. EAC general manager Adonis Yasemides said the authority supports and strengthens the health sector and “is always by the side of patients and their families”.