First organised in 2006 in conjunction with the World Cancer Congress, key objectives of the World Cancer Leaders' Summit (WCLS) include:
- raising awareness among leading decision makers to make cancer a global health priority;
- providing a forum to exchange information and innovative ideas on how to reverse the global cancer epidemic and ensure a sustainable response;
- defining compelling messages to support the global call to action against cancer;
- creating a global force which galvanizes politicians and policy makers and increases cancers’ visibility on the international public health agenda.
Summits held in 2006 (Washington, D.C.) and 2008 (Geneva) assisted in developing global advocacy activities among key cancer-control leaders, most notably the launch of the World Cancer Declaration Initiative.
The 2010 Summit held in Shenzhen, China included the participation of over 170 leaders from the health, government, philanthropic and corporate sectors. Highlights of the 2010 Summit included the launch of the Global Access to Pain Relief (GAPRI) Initiative and strategizing on how best to capitalize on the United Nations High Level Meeting on Non-Communicable Diseases to be held in September 2011. During the 2010 Summit, several participants pledged significant financial support for both initiatives.
UICC will organise the 2011 Summit shortly after the UN High Level Meeting on NCDs in order to quickly develop a broad-based action plan for cancer based on the outcomes of the UN meeting.
Purpose of the World Cancer Leaders’ Summit
The World Cancer Leaders’ Summit brings together global decision makers who can help shape the way our generation addresses the task of eliminating cancer as a life threatening disease for future generations. It allows for timely debate on emerging issues related to cancer and provides a forum to spotlight a major health issue which demands a coordinated, multi-leveled global response. The Summit complements other signature global events organized by UICC, which include:
- World Cancer Day: a global advocacy campaign to increase awareness and visibility of cancer prevention, control and treatment held annually on February 4. World Cancer Day activities are implemented by UICC’s 400+ members operating in more than 120 countries;
- World Cancer Congress: the signature biennial event within the global public health community. The World Cancer Congress provides a venue for top cancer control leaders, advocates and researchers to share the latest developments in cancer-related research and best practice directly linked to the 2020 targets highlighted in the World Cancer Declaration.
The Summit plays a pivotal role in this portfolio of global events by ensuring that the 2020 targets detailed in the World Cancer Declaration are appropriately recognized and addressed at the highest political levels.
Working in Partnership
While the 2006 and 2008 Summits were organized solely by UICC, the 2010 Summit was organized in partnership with the American Cancer Society, LIVESTRONG, the World Economic Forum and the World Health Organization.
Beginning in 2011, the World Cancer Leaders’ Summit will be held annually in partnership with a UICC member organisation. UICC has designated the Irish Cancer Society to serve as host country partner for the 2011 Summit. Other Summit partners will be announced in January 2011.
A fundamental principle underpinning the Summit is that cancer is a global health crisis which demands cooperation across many disciplines, cultures, industries and societies. Cancer affects everyone and does not recognize national boundaries. UICC seeks a range of partners to help reverse the global cancer epidemic, including:
- Cancer Survivors and their Families
- Cancer Prevention, Treatment, Research and Advocacy Organizations
- Heads of State and Royalty
- Policy Makers, Politicians and Ministries of Health
- UN Agencies
- Academics and Thought Leaders
- Media Outlets
- Representatives from other key Health-Focused Civil Society Organizations
- International Development Agencies
- Philanthropic Foundations
- Individual Donors
- Global pharmaceutical and non-pharmaceutical corporations