Through the LIVESTRONG Leader program, we engage individuals across the globe who are passionate about and committed to making cancer a priority in their own community. LIVESTRONG Leaders are vital to the success of LIVESTRONG by helping raise awareness, recruit and engage others in the LIVESTRONG movement, fundraise and advocate to their elected officials at the local, national and global level. Below is an interview from LIVESTRONG Leader Binzee Gonzalvo.
What does LIVESTRONG mean to you?
LIVESTRONG means “Unity is strength. Knowledge is power. Attitude is everything.” in every sense. After being diagnosed with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, I truly believe the unity of support from friends and family was one reason for my relatively smooth chemotherapy treatment and resulting complete remission. Given my form of NHL is incurable, being informed is so critical for me as my own patient advocate in making the best possible choices. Attitude has been so important in overcoming my cancer diagnosis and treatment. As I prepare for another half marathon, I remind myself when things get tough, nothing compares to chemo! LIVESTRONG!
Why are you a Leader?
Lance Armstrong’s book It’s Not About the Bike: My Journey Back to Life gave me hope and inspiration during my treatment. I hope to give back and share that same inspiration and empowerment to others affected by cancer in Japan. I started supporting LIVESTRONG on Oct 2, 2009 by hosting a LIVESTRONG Day walk around the Imperial Palace in Tokyo. From seven participants that year to 35 last year to multiple events planned this year, I look forward to spreading the LIVESTRONG movement throughout Japan! Now with the Lance Armstrong Foundation’s support, LIVESTRONG will be even stronger in the global fight against cancer!
What are you doing in your community?
Working alongside fellow Japan LIVESTRONG leader Jack Brajcich, we started Japan for LIVESTRONG pages for Facebook and Twitter (@jpn4livestrong). Our japanforlivestrong.org website is currently being prepared in English and Japanese. We are supporting “One World Project” which provides necessities like wigs to cancer survivors in Tohoku disaster region. I’m meeting local cancer advocates on how we can support cancer survivors locally and fitness-minded individuals like cyclists who can help raise awareness about our global fight against cancer. On May 28, we will be hosting our first J4L cycling event in Tokyo and Osaka to celebrate the 28 million cancer survivors worldwide.
kochira koso! (japanese which means “no, thank YOU!”)
Thank you for your continued support!