SHARE and State Senator Marisol Alcantara, along with Assemblywoman Carmen De La Rosa, just launched a campaign this March (Women's History Month) to raise awareness about breast cancer in underserved Latino and African-American communities.
With support from the Senator and Assemblywoman, SHARE and LatinaSHARE ambassadors will be distributing information about breast cancer throughout New York’s 31st Senate District, which is in upper Manhattan. New breast cancer ambassadors will also be trained on how to give presentations about screening and risk factors to their own communities.
This information is critically necessary in New York's African-American and Latino communities. African-American women have a disproportionately high breast cancer mortality rate, and Latina women have the lowest rate of regular mammogram screenings of any group. They may face economic, cultural, and linguistic barriers to healthcare access; low-income women in general are also less likely to have regular contact with health services.
The official launch of this project took place Thursday, March 16, with a press conference and information-distribution kickoff at The Avon Foundation Breast Imaging Center at NewYork-Presbyterian/Columbia University Medical Center.
"Our goal is to educate and empower medically underserved women so that they have the information and support they need to take charge of their health," said Ivis Febus-Sampayo, SHARE's Senior Director of Programs.
Maritza Del Toro, a 28 year survivor of breast cancer, added, "Women in our community need to learn about SHARE so that if breast cancer happens to them or to someone in their family, they’ll know where to turn for support."
After the press conference, four of LatinaSHARE's ambassadors, pictured below, began the work of bringing the materials into the community.