ATHENS, Oct. 7 (Xinhua) -- Thousands of Greeks sent their own symbolic message against breast cancer on Sunday, participating for the 10th consecutive year in the Greece Race for the Cure Against Breast Cancer.
This year the event, which includes a 5 km race and a symbolic 2 km walk, was held under the auspices of Greek President Prokopis Pavlopoulos.
Starting from Zappeion, a historic building in the National Gardens in the heart of Athens, more than 40,000 people, according to the organizers, participated in the race to stress that prevention can save lives in breast cancer.
"We run along with women who are fighting for their lives to show that we do not ignore them and we are on their side. The way they treat their illness and how they support both the women who are also sick and all of us is touching," Zoe Santa, a psychiatrist who helps many women who have survived breast cancer, told Xinhua.
The annual race is an initiative of the Greek Association of Women with Breast Cancer "Alma Zois" (Leap of Life) and is held with the support of the Athens Culture, Sport and Youth Organization (OPANDA) with the approval of the Susan G. Komen for the Cure organization, which launched the race about three decades ago in the United States.
It aims to highlight the importance of prevention and early detection and celebrate life with women who have gone through breast cancer.
"This year is special because we celebrate ten years of Greece Race for the Cure. It is the biggest awareness campaign for breast cancer, but generally for prevention and early diagnosis, so we are very happy that the whole world gets the message that the key is prevention," Paraskevi Michalopoulou, vice president of "Alma Zois", said.
"As you can see there are men, women, young, older people and it is very important that they are all talking about a difficult subject, but with a lot of joy with a mood to celebrate, giving priority to prevention," she stressed.