Silver Linings, the first Philippine homecoming for cancer survivors and national cancer forum for survivors held last September 25, 2005 Sunday at the EDSA Shangrila Hotel in Mandaluyong, Metro Manila, was a smashing hit.
The one day event was host to over 600 visitors representing survivors of different cancers, their families and friends. Twenty two forums took place along with free consulations with medical doctors and patient advocates, free massage, free haircut, wig demonstrations.
One of the speakers, Jim Paredes, and husband of a breast cancer survivor and member of I Can Serve, describes the event as a “demonstration of solidarity, unity and triumph of spirit. The whole affair was an overwhelming success.”
He capped best how everyone felt about the event, “I caught myself often on the verge of tears brought about by a mixture of compassion, pride, joy and being witness to such greatness of spirit which seemed everywhere. Sometimes it manifested itself in a little conversation with a stranger survivor, or listening to a sharing, or just looking at a woman with her head covered with bandana carrying herself with such determination and courage.”
“Silver Linings” stands for the two most important objectives of I Can Serve: empowering women with information and hope. The national cancer forum had always been a dream realized only recently. There is a clamor to stage it on a regular basis. The event has exceeded all expecations. A member of I Can Serve Alice Orleans said it was a “God size” event made possible by ” God’s grace.”