By Linette Lai, The Straits Times

When Ms Judy Anthony lost her hair while undergoing chemotherapy for fallopian tube cancer three years ago, her friends rallied around her to make sure she still felt beautiful.

"You become very ugly because of the chemotherapy and the hair loss," said the 43-year-old senior enrolled nurse. "But my friends would take me out, buy me wigs, and tell me that I looked fine."

Ms Anthony, who has since regained her hair, was one of nearly 10,000 people who ran in the annual Run For Hope against cancer yesterday.

The run, which is in its 24th year, was jointly organised by Four Seasons Hotel Singapore, Regent Singapore and National Cancer Centre Singapore (NCCS).

It raised $381,154, which will go into the NCC Research Fund to help find ways to diagnose cancer earlier, treat it more effectively, and prevent it from coming back.

The run, which took place along the Marina Bay waterfront, was one of a string of health-related events that happened all over Singapore yesterday. These included a mass health screening event in Boon Lay and the launch of a new taiji club by the North West Community Development Council.

Yesterday also marked the conclusion of another two-day event by the Singapore Cancer Society where people pledged to fight back against cancer by living a healthy lifestyle.

"The fight against cancer may not be easy, but as a community we can build a hedge of support and help around cancer patients and their families," said Ms Low Yen Ling, who is Mayor of the South West District.

"We can also do our part to spread the importance of regular health screening for early detection that can lead to better cancer survival rates."

Meanwhile, older residents in Boon Lay were offered free screenings for chronic health problems, as well as issues with vision or hearing. The screenings, organised under Boon Lay Grassroots Organisations' new One and Health Programme, were carried out by Jurong Health Services and the Health Promotion Board.

"The greatest gift you can give your family, loved ones and the community is a healthy you," said Mr Patrick Tay, an MP for West Coast GRC. "Regular screening can help prevent, detect and minimise risks of critical illnesses."

SOURCE: The Straits Times Singapore Press Holdings Limited. Reproduced with permission.