Sherbourne Health’s “Cancer Education, Screening & Care project for marginalized communities” is a two-year project, generously funded by CIBC. The goal of this project is to provide peer-led cancer education, prevention tips and screening to newcomers, the LGBT2SQ communities and to the homeless/under-housed. A key component of the project is to engage eligible community members to participate in screenings for breast, cervical and colon cancer.
The Cancer Prevention Promoters are representative of the diversity of clients that Sherbourne Health serves. They have experience in reaching out to their respective communities, and all share the common goal of making a difference in the community. In order to prepare them for this role, they were provided training in group facilitation, cancer prevention, in-depth understanding of screening for breast, cervical and colon cancer.
With the aim of engaging the community at the SJT Community Corner, peer-educators from this project partnered with the flu clinics being offered there on Nov 14th and Nov 18th. Cancer Prevention Promoters engaged with people in the lobby of the Corner after they had received their flu vaccine. They handed out pamphlets and postcards in relation to screening for these three types of cancers. They also engaged in one-on-one conversations about risk factors, the need for screening, and prevention of cancer. People who were interested in participating in screening clinics were encouraged to give their contact information. Over a span of two days, a total of 21 individuals expressed interest being called for the screening clinics. We gave a total of 37 resources to people over these two days.
It has been a successful outreach activity for the project, as it has enabled us to better connect with the community we will be offering cancer screenings to. We thank the SJT Community Corner and the Health Promotion team at Sherbourne Health for their support.