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Global Program Helps Cancer Patients

Cancer patients find that looking good helps them to feel better.
Cancer patients find that looking good helps them to feel better.
Global Program Helps Cancer Patients
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Hello again, and welcome. I’m Jim Tedder in Washington. At a time when it seems there is so much bad news in the world, on today’s program, we have some good news. First we’ll hear about some cancer survivors who are fighting the effects of this terrible disease in a rather unusual way.

Then we are off to the mysterious Himalayas to hear some very good news about efforts to save and protect Royal Bengal tigers. As It Is, the Education Report, and more about the history of the United States are straight ahead from VOA.

The Personal Care Products Council is a leading national trade association for the cosmetic and personal care products industry. It represents more than 600 companies. Its “Look Good, Feel Better” program operates around the world to help people who are fighting cancer. It aims to help people look and feel more normal at a difficult time in their lives.

When Cathy Davelli started chemotherapy for breast cancer, she knew her body would change. But the cancer also changed her feelings about herself.

“I lost a piece of who I was. I would walk by the mirror and did not recognize myself.”

The Personal Care Products Council created their program for cancer survivors like Cathy Davelli. Free classes teach them how to use beauty products to deal with the problems caused by chemotherapy.

The Personal Care Products Council says the beauty care industry donates seven to ten million dollars’ worth of products each year for the classes. But Cathy Davelli says looking better is not the only reason she took the classes.

“It’s been wonderful. Not only do you meet people, women, who are going through the same thing that you are going through and develop a camaraderie, but the tips that you learn are invaluable. They give you back some of what you’ve lost.”

Sometimes the program can help people who teach the classes, like make-up artist Jodie Hecker.

“I lost my mother to cancer and I lost my aunt to cancer, within 9 months of each other. And one of my aunt’s best friends works here at the Vince Lombardi Center and told me that if I got involved here with my make-up skills, it would be a healing process for me. When I was cheering them up, it took all the emphasis off me.”

The Look Good Feel Better program has now helped more than 1.2 million women in 25 countries around the world.

There is Something to Roar About in Nepal

A new study shows that the wild tiger population of Nepal has risen 63 percent in the last five years. Conservation groups say the country is demonstrating new resolve to protect the big cat.

The Nepali government says the number of Royal Bengal tigers in the nation has jumped from 121 in 2009 to 198.

A Royal Bengal tiger walks in Bardiya National Park in southern Nepal.
A Royal Bengal tiger walks in Bardiya National Park in southern Nepal.

Officials in Katmandu say Nepal wants to be the first South Asian country to double the number of large cats by 2022. That will be the Year of the Tiger, a worldwide campaign launched to save the animal from dying out.

Santosh Nepal of the World Wildlife Fund says the country has made good progress, because the government has taken illegal wildlife trade seriously. Its actions include working with conservation groups and local communities and creating a Wildlife Crime Control Bureau. The Nepali government also has sent soldiers and police officers to guard national parks from poachers… thieves and killers of wildlife for profit. Santosh Nepal says that with this effort, the supply chain for illegal trade has been broken.

Nepal is a major area for the movement of illegal wildlife trade. Animal parts are taken from India and other places in the world and moved through the area to China. Tiger bones are in especially high demand for use in traditional Chinese medicine. The pelts, or skins, are often seen in the province of Tibet.

Conservation officials say Nepal has been able to control poachers and smugglers better because of cooperation in the area. Neighboring countries are holding meetings on the issue. China and India are sharing intelligence. India has more than half of the world’s Royal Bengal tigers.

In December, India and Nepal are set to release the results of a year-long joint tiger survey. The study includes a 965-kilometer segment of land stretching across both countries.

Ghana Gurung directs the conservation program for WWF-Nepal. He says better control has resulted in much better intelligence about poaching.

He says, “In terms of India, we are not just talking about intelligence and sharing trade information, but about physically protecting the tiger, because tigers move between India and Nepal.”

Nepal is also working to increase the large cat’s habitat, its homeland. The government is creating new national parks, and pledging more than 2.5 million dollars over the next five years for tiger conservation.

But with increased numbers of tigers, officials are worried about possible conflict between these animals and humans. Santosh Nepal says the government provides financial help to tiger-attack victims and their families. He also says the government is working closely with villages near national parks to deal with peoples’ concerns. But the problem is a difficult one.

“We want to teach or make people learn to live in harmony with the tiger and other animals in the landscape. This is a critical issue. I don’t have any concrete answer to it.”

I’m Christopher Cruise on this Thursday edition of As It Is.

I’m Jim Tedder in Washington. More Learning English programs are straight ahead. And there’s world news at the beginning of the hour on VOA.