Catalan independence yellow ribbons clashing with a cancer symbol in Spain

Esther Paniagua

An image from the campaign against childhood cancer.

On Tuesday 11th of September Catalonia (Spain) celebrated its ‘National Day’. Hundreds of thousands Catalans in favor of independence filled the streets, wearing yellow ribbons: the symbol they are using for claiming freedom for the jailed Catalan politicians. Independentists have been using those ribbons for the last few months, clashing with the golden ribbons used by the Spanish Federation of Parents of Children with Cancer.

Now, as reported by Servimedia Spanish news agency, the federation complain of being harmed by the Catalan independence movement using such a similar symbol. “For a year now this golden colour has been confused with yellow and this is creating us many problems. Many people are not joining our initiative because of being afraid of being related to the Catalan independence movement”, a spokesperson of the federation told to Servimedia.

September is the month of childhood cancer awareness and for years many buildings and monuments illuminate their facades of gold in all around the world. This is part of the international campaign “Light up Hope, light up Gold” by the Childhood Cancer International organization that aims to raise awareness about childhood cancer and to give visibility to children suffering from this disease. 

A total of 21 Spanish associations that are part of the Spanish Federation of Parents of Children with Cancer join yearly the worldwide campaign, but this year they are having troubles to it. They report having several incidents in regions like Aragon, where a trading association hanging golden ribbons on the doors of their establishments to support the cancer campaign was accused of supporting the Catalan independence movement instead. “The same happened in Valencia, where using golden ties has being generating conflicting situations”, they said.

Now, the federation has decided to launch a new campaign called #PaintGold, consisting of painting two gold stripes on the face or using a gold ribbon sticker, which can be purchased on their own website.

The colored ribbons used as a symbol of the fight against cancer (


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