Funds raised this year will be split between the Cayman Islands Cancer Society (CICS), MS Foundation of the Cayman Islands and Alzheimer's and Dementia Association of the Cayman Islands (ADACI). Appleby's donation will go towards the event's ambitious CI 70,000 fundraising target for 2020.
As it enters its seventh year, the DG's 5K Challenge continues to unite civil servants, private sector employees and members of the general public in a fitness and fundraising challenge. The event is personally led by Deputy Governor, Hon. Franz Manderson, and is part of his vision to have a healthier, more active and more socially engaged civil service, while also benefitting charitable organisations and initiatives in the Cayman Islands.
At the press conference launch in the Government Administration Building, The CICS explained that funds raised will be used to support the Society's HPV vaccination programme, making the cancer-preventing vaccine accessible and free to all boys and girls in the Cayman Islands. This programme is vital in the fight to reduce incidences of cervical, ear, nose and throat cancers. Funds will also support ongoing public education and the CICS will continue to strive to screen, prevent and improve survivorship of cancer patients.
The MS Foundation of the Cayman Islands added that its portion of the funds raised will be used to provide financial and emotional support to MS patients and their families. As there is no cure for the life-long disease, the Foundation aims to alleviate the long-term financial burden on patients brought by medication, doctors' appointments, MRIs and other associated costs. The organisation is working to provide education to the community, while simultaneously creating a support network for the "MS warriors" to ensure they are well-served medically and emotionally while living with the disease.
The ADACI said that it is extremely honoured to be one of this year's beneficiaries. Funds raised by the Challenge will be used primarily to launch the "Dementia Friends" programme, which is a far-reaching initiative that will include pre-schoolers. The respite care programme will also receive funds; together, these ADACI programmes will benefit the Cayman Islands through the provision of care and support, the elimination of verbal and physical abuse and the dispelling of stigma around the disease.
Deputy Governor, Hon. Franz Manderson, expressed his reasoning for choosing this year's charities, saying "Fundraising from this year's DG's 5K Challenge will contribute to reducing instances of cancer and provide meaningful care and support for those who suffer serious and debilitating diseases like MS, Alzheimer's and Dementia. I encourage everyone living in the Cayman Islands to join us in April for as many of the three challenges as they can manage! Together, we really can help today and protect tomorrow."
Partner Norman Klein commented on Appleby's continued involvement with the event, saying "We have been very pleased to watch this event grow year after year and to continue to support the Deputy Governor's efforts to raise money for our community's most vulnerable members and promote exercise and healthy habits. At Appleby we are always looking to build these kinds of strong relationships with community groups and other worthwhile initiatives in all our jurisdictions. We look forward to seeing what is accomplished at this year's 5K challenge."
To celebrate its seventh year, the event will return to all three islands on the following dates:
∙ Sunday, 5 April – Cayman Brac
∙ Sunday, 19 April – Little Cayman
∙ Sunday, 26 April – Grand Cayman
Prospective participants can register on the CaymanActive website www.caymanactive.com/dg5k from 1 March.