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Sunday, April 21, 2024

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A Home for Rodriguan Breast Cancer Patient

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Since 2014, she has been fighting in order to relieve those women suffering from breast cancer. Shamima Patel-Mongauze, who is the president and the founder of the NGO ‘Breast Cancer Care’ (BCC), recently a house equipped in Quatre Bornes to accommodate women from Rodrigues suffering from this disease. The seven-bedroom house can actually shelter these women for free and they are provided with breakfast and dinner free. A maid is available every day, as well as a support service at night.

Shamima Patel-Mongauze explains that the Rodriguan women suffering from breast cancer have to be transferred to Mauritius for treatment. But once here, they do not have a shelter or a house where they can live while being treated. Always exhausted by their treatment, they need a comfortable resting place in order to recharge their batteries. « I had this project in mind since 2018. And in relation to that, I contacted the Commissioner for Health in Rodrigues. But nothing positive came out of it and my project was frozen », she says.  Shamima Patel-Mongauze believes that women suffering from cancer are not only patients but are also ‘warriors’, fighting to overcome the disease. In order to help the Rodriguan women facing this difficult situation, she launched ‘Madam Rodrig’, a great project. Where the ‘warriors’ and other women in difficult situations in Rodrigues can prepare various products, such as pickles, lemon products, octopi’s products, and others, which are put in jars before being commercialized in supermarkets in Mauritius. Winners’, a well-known supermarket in Mauritius, showed much concern and was very sensible about her approach. So, they agreed to sell the products of ‘Madam Rodrig’ as a way to stand up for this cause and support the project. « I have to pay tribute to the Rodriguan team, Sophie, Jacqueline, Jenny and Marie Claire, who, in spite of the distance between us, have greatly contributed for the success of this project. A special thought to ‘Bio Culture’, which has accepted to meet the financial requirements of the house and the production of all products of ‘Madam Rodrig’. I also have to thank my husband Philippe and the whole team of ‘BCC’ for their support », she adds.

Products for the fight against breast cancer.
Products for the fight against breast cancer.

Shamima Patel-Mongauze is a well-known figure in the fight against breast cancer. She suffered from the disease in the year 2010 and was treated over a period of nine months, before learning that she has also developed a cancer of the uterus, and later she had to undergo a uterine removal. This difficult period made her a fighter and she then decided to form her association in order to encourage women suffering from breast cancer so that they do not sink into despair. The NGO has four centers, namely in Vacoas, Port Louis, Mahebourg and Rodrigues, and wishes to sensitize women about the risks associated to the disease, as well as the preventive measures. Numerous services, such as ultrasound scan, mammogram, leisure activities and psychological support, among others, are accessible via these centers. Since 2014, ‘BCC’ has accompanied some 11 000 women suffering from breast cancer in Mauritius and Rodrigues. Shamima Patel-Mongauze encourages the Mauritians to buy products made by ‘Madam Rodrig’, as the money earned will finance the activities of the ‘home’ and of ‘BCC’.

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