October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, which is an annual campaign to increase awareness of the disease and to raise funds for research into its cause, prevention, diagnosis, treatment and cure. Corporates and educational institutions in Qatar showed support to the ‘pink month’ with awareness campaigns and fundraisers.

Qatar Airways

Qatar Airways celebrated Breast Cancer Awareness month with a series of initiatives and activities to raise both awareness and funds for the disease that affects women all around the world. The airline’s efforts were recognised at the Beauty & Beast Awards, held at Eatopia on 28 October, Doha, Qatar, when Qatar Airways presented a cheque for QAR 83,000. The money, which was raised through bake sales held at various locations in Doha, will go towards Qatar Cancer Society.

Qatar Airways Pink Month

During the course of activities, Qatar Airways staff took to their kitchens to whip up a number of delicious sweets and goodies which were sold over the course of the last week in October. Simultaneously, the award-winning airline organised a series of workshops and awareness-raising events to help alert staff to the dangers of the disease, and how periodic self-assessment and early diagnosis is vital to successful treatment.

Female employees were encouraged to take part in one of three information sessions held at the Oryx Rotana on October 28th. In addition to survivors sharing their stories, guest speakers such as Qatar Airways Senior Vice President HR Employee Services, Nabeela Fakhri, and Qatar Airways Head of Medical Services, Dr Soha Al Bayat, helped advise employees on how to deal with the disease.

Participants also had the opportunity to watch a video created by the airline featuring one of their very own employees, Qatar Airways Cabin Services Director, Mylah Loring. The video, which is featured on the airline’s multiple social media channels, shares the emotional story of Mylah’s breast cancer diagnosis, treatment, and conquering of the disease.

Diva Lounge Spa

To mark the world breast cancer awareness month, Diva Lounge Spa in association with the Qatar Cancer Society hosted a workshop for the Spa’s clients on the Prevention, Early Detection of Cancer and Spa Therapies on Sunday 1 November at the Royal Plaza Mall – the venue of Diva Lounge Spa’s newest location.

Diva Lounge Spa Pink Month
Diva Lounge Spa’s Sughra Khaliq and Qatar Cancer Society’s Heba Nasser

The workshop was delivered by Heba Nasser from Qatar Cancer Society where she informed the guests about the different symptoms of cancer, the importance of early detection of breast cancer and how to conduct self-examination.

Breast cancer affects 1 in 8 women in developed countries.  In Qatar alone cancer is the third biggest cause of death and breast cancer accounts for 24% of all cancer related deaths.   People lead an increasingly sedentary lifestyle, eat more processed food, make little time for exercise and generally do not prioritise their health due to a hectic schedule.

Diva Lounge Spa, headed by Group Operations Manager Sughra Khaliq, donated to Qatar Cancer Society a cheque for the amount of QAR 10,000 to help in research initiatives for cancer.


Mashreq Qatar

Mashreq Bank Breast CancerMashreq Qatar’s team gathered at the Bank’s head office in support of Breast Cancer Awareness Month – October. Staff members participated in the Bank’s “Pink Day” initiative to raise awareness and share this important day with all the women worldwide.


Hamad General Hospital (HGH)

Breast Cancer Awareness HMC 2015

Hamad General Hospital (HGH) held a campaign to raise awareness about breast cancer for patients, families, and visitors.

During the campaign, patients had the opportunity to gain knowledge about different topics pertinent to breast cancer; such as the subject of breast cancer and breastfeeding, the importance of maintaining a healthy diet, and the relationship between breast cancer and smoking. A special demonstrative session allowed the participants to learn how to do self-examination to check for symptoms of breast cancer.

The participants were also encouraged to ‘Be Breast Aware’ and were reminded of five points: to know what is normal, know what changes to look for, to regularly look at and feel their breasts, to make an appointment with a doctor as soon as possible if any changes are observed, and to go for breast cancer screening if they are over the age of 45.

Representatives of the campaign also distributed educational brochures and pink ribbons – the international symbol of breast cancer awareness – to the public at the main lobby of HGH.

Also read: Expat Story: Two-time Breast Cancer Survivor Relates Experience

Magnolia Bakery

Magnolia Bakery Breast Cancer 2015As in previous years, Magnolia Bakery offered its special pink ribbon cupcake, available in chocolate or vanilla with vanilla buttercream and an edible pink ribbon, for QR17 during the month of October, QAR2 from each pink ribbon cupcake sold was donated to Qatar Cancer Society. Additionally, the bakery donated a dessert table with QAR5,000 worth of freshly baked goods to School of Foreign Service in Qatar (SFS-Q) fundraiser, which was organised to support Qatar Cancer Society.

Park House English School


Students and families at Park House English School hosted their annual Pink Day charity initiative on 22 October 2015 in support of Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Park House students and parents raised an impressive QAR 18,279 during Pink Day. The school contributed a further QAR 10 000 making it a grand total of QAR 28, 279. All of the funds were donated to the Qatar Cancer Society to help support those living with breast cancer and to further aid cancer research.

During Pink Day, students at Park House wore pink to school and participated in a number of school-wide activities including: a bake sale, selling pink ribbons to their peers as well as selling pink stationary items, all part of their fund-raising campaign for Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

In addition, Park House continues to share the message of breast cancer awareness among the student body with a number of presentations and group discussions organised by the Medical Science Club to give students a better understanding about the cause and the importance behind raising awareness and funding for initiatives such as this.