Kigali will soon become home to Africa's first City Cancer Challenge (C/Can) Foundation, an organisation that partners with cities to deliver quality and equitable cancer care for all.
The development was disclosed on Monday as the City of Kigali hosted a delegation led by Princess Dina Mired of Jordan.
The delegation was meeting the City of Kigali's C/Can committee members to discuss the ongoing engagement process of cancer care and treatment.
Pudence Rubingisa, the Mayor of the City of Kigali, showcased the progress made through the C/Can model in tackling cancer challenges in Kigali.
The Committee reviewed key tasks and identified the priorities of the city of Kigali.
Kigali is the first African city to be introduced to the City Cancer Challenge.
Princess Dina Mired, President of the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC) under which the C/Can Foundation operates, said Rwanda's will to collaborate attracted the organisation's interest.
"Rwanda is an example of how political will, realistic planning, prioritisation and appropriate resources can work together towards the implementation of concrete measures to reduce the national cancer burden," Princess Mired told the media.
C/Can foundation will provide technical and managerial support. It will also help in facilitating and organising donation activities.
"Cancer is a costly disease (to treat) and nobody has enough money for treatment, infrastructures and facilities. But once a country has efficient plans, C/Can helps bring in partners and donations," Princess Dina Mired added.
The city of Kigali already has a partnership with Rwanda Palliative Care and Hospice Organisation and Polyfam Clinic to ease cancer treatment.
Rubingisa said that through the Foundation, the City of Kigali will be able to deliver more effective and efficient cancer treatment solutions.
"By leveraging existing infrastructure at different levels of the healthcare system in the city and a good partnership with key local players, we believe our projects will be effective," he said.
Sophie Bussmann-Kemdjo, C/Can's Africa Regional Director, said that in the process, cities will mentor other cities with as Kigali a model.
"Our raison d'être at C/Can is to support cities to lead solutions and implementation by collaborating across sectors, forming effective partnerships to fight for equitable access to quality cancer care," she said. "We are thrilled by the potential of the City of Kigali to serve as a model for other cities in Africa."
City Cancer Challenge was launched by the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC) at the 2017 World Economic Forum Annual Meeting in Davos, Switzerland.
The City of Kigali responded to City Cancer Challenge´s call to action for a new approach to cancer care in November 2017.
In Rwanda, the International Agency for Research on Cancer IARC forecasts cancer incidence and mortality by 2025 will be 10,112, with 4,479 deaths among men and 5,633 among women.
Last year, 10,704 new cancer cases involving 4,520 males and 6,184 females were recorded, according to the Director of Cancer Programme at Rwanda Biomedical Centre, Dr François Uwinkindi.