Get off the bench and get involved with cancer control, Canada

This year the Canadian Partnership Against Cancer is using the power of sport to empower Canadians to pledge how “We can. I can.” help reduce the burden of cancer

TORONTO On February 4, the Canadian Partnership Against Cancer will once again join organizations across the globe to mark World Cancer Day. The Partnership will support the Union for International Cancer Control’s (UICC) global initiative “Support through sport,” to harness the collective power of sport by encouraging fans, organizations and personalities from across the globe to use their voice and show their commitment on World Cancer Day.

Under the banner “We can. I can.”, the day will encourage people to be more active – in every sense – in the fight against a disease that, in less than two decades, will directly affect 21.7 million[1] people globally per year – the equivalent to almost 60% of the current population of Canada.[2]

“We’re proud to continue our support for World Cancer Day as it represents a significant moment for every Canadian to reflect on what they can do as an individual, and as part of a community, to make a difference in reducing the burden of cancer,” said Partnership CEO Shelly Jamieson. “By integrating the theme of ‘Support through sport’, we are able to underscore how everyone has a potential role to play in improving the cancer experience, as sport allows everyone at every level to participate and get involved.”

Along with the benefits from prevention, a growing body of evidence shows that physical activity significantly helps cancer patients, not only to manage the life-altering side-effects of treatment such as fatigue, depression and heart damage, but also in reducing the risk of the disease worsening or recurring.[3] Research shows, for example, a breast cancer patient’s risk of recurrence and dying from the disease can be reduced by up to 40% by doing recommended levels of physical activity.[4]

Support for World Cancer Day will be felt across Canada. The following landmarks will be lit in orange and blue on February 4, 2017 to recognize World Cancer Day:

  • Halifax City Hall in Halifax, Nova Scotia
  • CN Tower in Toronto, Ontario
  • Niagara Falls, including the Canadian Horseshoe Falls, American Falls and Bridal Veil Falls, through the Niagara Falls Illumination Board
  • Calgary Tower in Calgary, Alberta
  • High Level Bridge in Edmonton, Alberta
  • Olympic Cauldron at Jack Poole Plaza in Vancouver, British Columbia
  • Canada Place Sails of Light in Vancouver, British Columbia
  • Rogers Arena in Vancouver, British Columbia

Get involved

Canadians who want to show their support on World Cancer Day are encouraged to join the global movement on February 4th by writing #WeCanICan on a piece of sporting equipment, taking a photo of themselves, their team or club and sharing the photo as broadly as possible across Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, and including #WeCanICan and #WorldCancerDay in their post.

More information about World Cancer Day and how it is being recognized around the world is available at


For more information, please contact:

Nick Williams
Communications Officer, Media Relations
Canadian Partnership Against Cancer
(416) 915-9222, x5799 (office)
(647) 388-9647 (mobile)

About World Cancer Day 2017

World Cancer Day takes place every year on the 4th of February and is the single initiative under which the world can unite to raise the profile of cancer in a positive and inspiring way.

Coordinated by UICC, World Cancer Day is this year taking place under the tagline “We can. I can.” and explores how everyone – as a collective or as individuals – can do their part to reduce the global burden of cancer. Just as cancer affects everyone in different ways, everyone has the power to take action to reduce the impact that cancer has. World Cancer Day is a chance to reflect on what you can do, make a pledge and take action.

About the Canadian Partnership Against Cancer

The Canadian Partnership Against Cancer works with Canada’s cancer community to reduce the burden of cancer on Canadians. Grounded in and informed by the experiences of those affected by cancer, the organization works with partners to support multi-jurisdictional uptake of evidence that will help to optimize cancer control planning and drive improvements in quality of practice across Canada. Through sustained effort and a focus on the cancer continuum, the organization supports the work of the collective cancer community in achieving long-term population outcomes: reduced incidence of cancer, less likelihood of Canadians dying from cancer, and an enhanced quality of life of those affected by cancer.

About the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC)

UICC is the largest international cancer-fighting organization, with over 1,000 member organizations across 160 countries representing the world’s major cancer societies, ministries of health, research institutes, treatment centres and patient groups. The organization is dedicated to taking the lead in convening, capacity building and advocacy initiatives that unite the cancer community to reduce the global cancer burden, promote greater equity, and integrate cancer control into the world health and development agenda.

UICC and its multi-sectoral partners are committed to encouraging governments to look towards the implementation and scale-up of quality and sustainable programs that address the global burden of cancer and other noncommunicable diseases (NCDs). UICC is also a founding member of the NCD Alliance, a global civil society network that now represents almost 2,000 organizations in 170 countries.

For more information, please visit:


1 World Cancer Research Fund International (2012) Worldwide data, available at:   [Accessed 12/01/2017]

2 Statistics Canada. Population by year, by province and territory 2012-2016. Available at: [Accessed 24/1/2017]

Macmillan Cancer Support (2011) The importance of physical activity for people living with and beyond cancer: A concise evidence review, available at: [Accessed 12/01/2017]

4 Ibid.