On World Cancer Day, We Celebrate Fighters Who Continue to Inspire Us Across the Arab World
As sad as it is that there are millions of people diagnosed with cancer all over the world, the happy news is that many of them have success stories that are truly inspiring. And since the 4th of February marks World Cancer Day, we decided to shed light on the stories of entrepreneurs, artists, and influential figures, who have defeated or are currently fighting cancer.
In 2015, Omar Sharawy was diagnosed with Lymphoma; a type of cancer that affects the immune system. He decided to document his chemotherapy sessions to inspire others and give them hope that there is light at the end of the tunnel. Sharawy is a two-times cancer survivor, a Fitness Trainer for Ignite Egypt, and was also featured in a Ramadan charity ad for 57357 Hospital.
This Egyptian actress first stole our hearts in the TV series ‘Halawet El Donia’, where she played a role that came from her real life experience. Yasmine Ghaith is a breast cancer survivor, a motivational speaker, an actress, and the Founder of YG Pieces, which is her own jewelry line. The pieces are inspired by her scars to represent her journey.
Jarah Al Hawamdeh
Jarah Al Hawamdeh is a Palestinian-Jordanian who had his leg amputated after being diagnosed with cancer, to stop it from spreading. He is a certified mountaineer who has climbed some of the world’s most iconic mountains, including Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania and Mount Everest Base Camp in Nepal. He was also named the first Palestinian refugee climber with an artificial limb. He has been campaigning for refugees and cancer patients.
Hassan Al Najjar
Hassan Al Najjar is an Emirati cancer survivor, who started his own media production company and now serves major public and private entities in Dubai by producing media content and filmmaking. Al Najjar explains that once you learn how to die, you learn how to live.
Disregarding the ‘ideal image” that celebrities are usually expected to be in, Elissa bravely revealed her battle with breast cancer in her music video for the song Ila Kol Elli Bihebouni “To Those Who Love Me”, in 2017. The Lebanese star showed us her strength when she ended the video saying “I’ve recovered, I’ve beaten the illness, and I won”.
After announcing that he has been diagnosed with colon cancer, the controversial TV host posted several videos supporting other cancer patients, and encouraging them to focus on their happiness and stay positive. He later announced that he is free of cancer, but has continued to spread positive vibes through his program and elsewhere.