Renewed Funding Provided by Avon Foundation
Hundreds more women from throughout Camden County will have access to breast health education and screening thanks to the Avon Foundation Breast Health Outreach Program’s renewed support of the New Jersey Cancer Education and Early Detection Program at Cooper (Cooper CEED).
The Avon Foundation for Women announced that it would again grant Cooper’s CEED program $35,000 for outreach to underserved women who live in Camden and the surrounding area. This is the fourth year this grant was funded, and to date 2,130 women have taken part in breast health education programs, 1,465 have received breast exams and 1,287 have had free mammograms.
Cooper CEED uses the Avon Foundation grant to provide outreach using a fun, unique and memorable approach. Women are invited to host “Breast Health Parties” at homes, in community centers or in churches. Using educational games, trained nurses and outreach workers explain the importance of early detection; provide information for obtaining free screenings for the uninsured; educate on risks for breast cancers; and discuss community myths.
“Educating women in this kind of social setting has been very successful and we’re so pleased that we can continue to do it,” explains Evelyn Robles-Rodriguez, RN, MSN, Director of Oncology Outreach Programs at Cooper. She explains that the camaraderie, support and power found in a group of female friends will often influence a woman’s perception about breast health and motivate her to be screened.
“The parties have helped tremendously in overcoming dangerous myths that have been prevalent in some of our communities. We are extremely grateful that the Avon Foundation shares our commitment to this important cause,” adds Robles-Rodriguez.
Since 1993, Cooper CEED has been working to help save the lives of underinsured and uninsured women and men in Camden and surrounding communities. Through Cooper CEED, more than 9,500 women have been screened for breast cancer and 147cancers have been detected and treated in these women. Last year, the program screened over 1,550 women for breast and cervical cancers, and 140 men for prostate cancer. Fifteen of the women were discovered to have breast cancer.
“Each effort by CEED at Cooper represents another unique lifesaving opportunity,” says Generosa Grana, MD, Director of the Cooper Cancer Institute. “This grant will take us further in our endeavors to help save women’s lives.”
Robles-Rodriguez says, “Hosting a party in your community could help save your life, a family member’s life, or one of your friends. If you are not insured, cost is not a reason for not receiving breast cancer screening. The CEED programs cover tests from screening to diagnosis at no cost.”