EuropaColon was launched in 2004 by Jola Gore Booth, who responded to a call to support colorectal cancer patients outside of the United Kingdom. For the next 10 years, the organization grew across Europe and established a reputation for commitment and dedication to the interests and needs of these patients. EuropaColon has now established or partnered with 43 advocacy groups in 32 European countries.

In 2015, recognizing that patients with other digestive cancers were not getting information or the support they needed, the board of EuropaColon decided to expand into these cancers, starting with pancreatic. In that year, the organization took part in early meetings that led to the forming of the World Pancreatic Cancer Coalition (WPCC).

EuropaColon strongly supports the work of the Coalition and raising awareness of pancreatic cancer. We see our main contribution as raising awareness of this and other digestive cancers amongst our Affiliate and Associate groups in Europe. Wherever possible, we encourage them to expand into the wider digestive cancers arena and to join the WPCC.

During our Masterclass in June this year, we included for the first time a module on pancreatic cancer. Our speakers presented the latest clinical developments and a session specifically discussed issues from a patient perspective. It was encouraging to see that this led to a number of our groups agreeing to expand their work and embrace pancreatic cancer as part of their strategy.

Working in digestive cancers has proven a most valuable opportunity, giving us the chance to learn from other organizations and to contribute our experience and that of our groups to the mix — all the while watching the drive and enthusiasm from WPCC that proves that mountains can be moved.

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Media outlets across the globe helped raise awareness of the symptoms and risks associated with the world’s toughest cancer on World Pancreatic Cancer Day, inspiring people to take action and Demand Better. For Patients. For Survival.

Below are a few worldwide media highlights:

World Pancreatic Cancer Day, which is observed around the globe each November during Pancreatic Cancer Awareness Month, is a one-day event aimed at raising critical global awareness of the disease and motivating people to take action.

Every day, more than 1,000 people worldwide are diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. Within that amount, an estimated 985 will die from the disease. Additionally, pancreatic cancer has the lowest survival rate among all major cancers, and in nearly every country, it is the only one with a single-digit, five-year survival rate (two to nine percent). These stunning figures are not merely statistics; they represent family members, friends and colleagues living around the world.

The World Pancreatic Cancer Coalition comprises more than 60 pancreatic cancer organizations and advocacy groups across the globe in efforts to raise awareness of the world’s toughest cancer and highlight the need for greater funding and research.

World Pancreatic Cancer Day, which is championed by the Coalition, will take place in 2018 on Thursday, Nov. 15. Learn more at Follow the WPCC on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.