Caring CAN change a life

Making kindness, mindfulness and passion for hard work an everyday thing.

08 November 2019 | Health

Evany van Wyk



In June 2015, Rolf Hansen was appointed as the third chief executive officer of the Cancer Association of Namibia (CAN) since its inception in 1968. Hansen was only 30 years old at the time and says stepping into this position has been the most life-enriching experience he has ever had.

Five years later he says he thought he would be the one adding value to CAN, but instead it has added value to his life.

Hansen was born in Swakopmund and completed high school at Windhoek High School in the capital. He went on to pursue a bachelor’s of commerce degree in marketing at the University of South Africa while working in the media industry. Working at Republikein, and then embarking on his solo journey of becoming an entrepreneur, Hansen was quite the busy man.

“Wanting to gain more knowledge about ‘what is truly out there’, I started a business in the tourism and hospitality industry,” says Hansen.

IN 2015, he decided that it was time for a career change and by sheer coincidence saw the position of CEO for CAN advertised.

“At that point in my life I wanted to move into a stage where meaning and value addition to others and myself was my main aim,” he says.

He has subsequently completed a master’s course in cancer control and implementation, training in epidemiology, and is currently serving as both CEO of CAN and as the national director of the Namibia National Cancer Registry.

Management of CAN’s national activities, administration and patient support programmes are only a few of his many responsibilities.

“To keep our operations ongoing means that we need to raise funds, have a business model, a sustainable welfare arm and deal with legislation and policy development to the benefit of Namibians diagnosed with cancer,” Hansen explains. The National Cancer Registry also falls directly under his duties and responsibilities.

Hansen says because people tend to ignore cancer, getting the message of awareness and early detection across becomes a big challenge. “Uninformed people make our jobs tough. People tend to bad-mouth CAN’s efforts without knowing what we do, the services we provide or the help we extend.”

His love for the job overshadows the challenges faced. Hearing from a patient who beat cancer and being on that journey with them is emotionally taxing but also a humbling experience, according to him. “You have the realisation every day that life is precious,” Hansen says.

This year has been challenging for many, including CAN. As a non-governmental organisation (NGO), the association tries to support the ministry of health and social services’ efforts to improve the support to cancer patients in Namibia. “Fortunately our footprint has expanded yet again, while we have joined forces with ministerial teams to draft national policies that will enhance care for cancer patients in future,” says Hansen about how the year has been so far and the way forward.

Hansen believes that a person is never too old to learn and that keeping your feet on the ground, your head cool and your heart warm is all that matters.

PHOTO CONTRUBUTED

Picture1- Rolf Hansen at the recent World Cancer Leaders Summit in Nur-Sultan, Kazakhstan, where challenges in global access to cancer care was discussed by NGOs and possible strategies to overcome these challenges were focused on.

Similar News

 

Expanding possibilities through Informatics

1 week ago - 15 May 2020 | Education

Dr Irja Shaanika completed her undergraduate studies at the Namibia University of Science and Technology (NUST), where she is also a lecturer.She obtained her PhD...

De Beers Group donates a COVID-19 testing machine to...

2 weeks ago - 06 May 2020 | Health

De Beers Group today donated a COVID-19 testing machine to the Government of Namibia as part of its committed N$15 million in-kind donation in response...

Stronger together

2 weeks ago - 05 May 2020 | Health

The Pupkewitz Foundation, through the Citizen’s Campaign, aims to protect healthcare workers who are at the forefront of the coronavirus pandemic. Through raising funds, this...

Old Mutual strengthens NIP testing capacity

3 weeks ago - 30 April 2020 | Health

On 28 April Old Mutual officially handed over their sponsorship of two new testing machines to the Namibia Institute of Pathology (NIP) to strengthen their...

Bringing Namibian artists to your living room

3 weeks ago - 27 April 2020 | Cultural

The 2019 Namibian Annual Music Awards' Artist of the Year, Lize Ehlers, The Lof, the Ell’s, Sean K and even Big Ben, to only mention...

Ministry of Education sets the record straight

1 month - 23 April 2020 | Special Pages

The Ministry of Education, Arts and Culture wishes to assure the nation at large that so far no final decision has been taken after a...

Ministry of Education sets the record straight

1 month - 23 April 2020 | Education

The Ministry of Education, Arts and Culture wishes to assure the nation at large that so far no final decision has been taken after a...

Windhoek Affies gereed vir e-onderrig

1 month - 17 April 2020 | Education

Windhoek Afrikaanse Privaatskool (WAP) is al vir die afgelope drie weke besig om die e-onderrig platform te implementeer en personeel asook leerlinge daarvoor te registreer....

HOAX ALERT

1 month - 17 April 2020 | Local News

Air Namibia will not operate the Friday, 17 April 2020 flight as indicated below.The Namibian National Airline, Air Namibia is classified as an essential service...

Latest News

Staying safe and secure whilst...

1 week ago - 15 May 2020 | Columns

Jan CoetzeeNamibia may seem remote and often disconnected from the world, but things came starkly into focus. We are part of the global village and...

by Ester Kamati

The a-ha moment

1 week ago - 15 May 2020 | Banking

Dr Rikus Grobler believes that people's creative ideas are every organisation's superpower – it just needs to be harnessed. He says his ability to recognise,...

by Mariselle Stofberg

De Beers Group donates a...

2 weeks ago - 06 May 2020 | Health

De Beers Group today donated a COVID-19 testing machine to the Government of Namibia as part of its committed N$15 million in-kind donation in response...

by

Stronger together

2 weeks ago - 05 May 2020 | Health

The Pupkewitz Foundation, through the Citizen’s Campaign, aims to protect healthcare workers who are at the forefront of the coronavirus pandemic. Through raising funds, this...

by Mariselle Stofberg

Old Mutual strengthens NIP testing...

3 weeks ago - 30 April 2020 | Health

On 28 April Old Mutual officially handed over their sponsorship of two new testing machines to the Namibia Institute of Pathology (NIP) to strengthen their...

by Mariselle Stofberg

Bringing Namibian artists to your...

3 weeks ago - 27 April 2020 | Cultural

The 2019 Namibian Annual Music Awards' Artist of the Year, Lize Ehlers, The Lof, the Ell’s, Sean K and even Big Ben, to only mention...

by Mariselle Stofberg

Ministry of Education sets the...

1 month - 23 April 2020 | Special Pages

The Ministry of Education, Arts and Culture wishes to assure the nation at large that so far no final decision has been taken after a...

by ELIZABETH JOSEPH

Ministry of Education sets the...

1 month - 23 April 2020 | Education

The Ministry of Education, Arts and Culture wishes to assure the nation at large that so far no final decision has been taken after a...

by ELIZABETH JOSEPH

Bank Windhoek launches free essentials...

1 month - 23 April 2020 | Banking

The Rider Service was launched on Thursday, 16 April 2020 and is an add-on service to the Hey Jude for Bank Windhoek App, an exclusive...

by

Load More