Article from Floribeth de Finizio , President, Pink Warriors Panama
The history of Breast Cancer Dragon boat paddling in Panama began in May 2019 when the organizers of the Panamanian Chinese Association decided to incorporate the BCS category in their 5th dragon boat festival in Panama, particularly as the team of Nahuel Rosa from Argentina was joining the event as guests.
We formed as a team with 14 members and we competed against the Argentine and Colombian teams that came to our country in July 2019. That year, we had the opportunity to participate in different activities, such as: the Dragon Boat Festival, the Ling Long Cup, and the 1st Dragon boat Festival in Bariloche, Argentina, where we have spread our message of awareness about the importance of prevention in breast cancer.
This year 2021, we have resumed our activities to keep improving and building our numbers. Now our team has 38 members, and we already have our own boat of 10 paddlers, and we have been in training to participate in the Pan American Dragon Boat Championships that will be held in Panama. It will be the first time that the category of breast cancer survivors is incorporated. We also want to travel to the IBCPC festival in New Zealand in 2023.
Our objective as a sports association is to inspire other survivors to participate in this discipline and show that through sports, you can go ahead with your life. Currently, in addition to the sports team, we have a support group – Volunteers Pink - made up of more than 60 members, also cancer patients, from all ages in which we provide support to those patients who start their treatment for the first time. We have formed a community in which each member identifies and supports themselves both physically and emotionally. Each member represents the spirit of effort, of competitiveness, but above all of survival.