Throughout PECaD’s history, breast cancer has been a top focus of community education and outreach in addition to continued prevention research. Under the guidance of co-chair and long-time PECaD supporter, Debra Custer, BSHS, Program Manager of the Start Now Program at Touchette Regional Hospital in East St. Louis, IL, and co-chair, Donna Jeffe, PhD, professor of medicine at Washington University School of Medicine, PECaD faculty and staff have been working to revitalize the Breast Cancer Community Partnership (BCaP).
Originally launched in 2005, BCaP’s main goal has been to work towards eliminating breast cancer in the St. Louis region through multiple strategies including community outreach and education, research, and training initiatives to address disparities in breast cancer prevention and survivorship. Through the support of community members and organizations, BCaP now hopes to be stronger than ever.
In November 2017, community members from multiple organizations including The Breakfast Club, Planned Parenthood, Show Me Healthy Women, Touchette Regional Hospital, and others, met for a strategic planning workshop. The purpose of the workshop was to establish new short and long terms goals for BCaP, and create avenues to achieve the proposed goals in an impactful and meaningful way to help eliminate breast cancer disparities.
Some of BCaP’s immediate goals include the development of a breast cancer commuinty resource guide, community outreach events specifically geared towards women’s health, patient education, mass media campaigns, and addressing the
disparities that exist within the African American, Bosnian, Hispanic, and American Indian communities.
Moving forward, BCaP plans to meet monthly to continue momentum and work towards combatting breast cancer in our community. These one-hour meetings serve as an engine for community organizations to inform each other about what’s happening with breast cancer prevention and treatment in St. Louis city and county, and for PECaD faculty to help assist community organizations in meeting the needs of St. Louis women. Our efforts to create the breast cancer community resource guide will begin in fall 2017 with a planned completion date of summer 2018. These guides will be disseminated throughout local health centers, community outreach events, various health organizations, and a host of churches and community centers.