Breast Cancer is a serious health risk that women (and even men, though rarely) face. CDC statistics from 2007 state that 202,964 women were diagnosed with breast cancer with 40,598 fatalities (CDC, 2011). This is a disease that does not discriminate and has no specific known cause. The primary risk is being female and aging. In California from July 2005 to June 2010 the breast cancer rates were 3.6 cases for every 1000 women screened (CDC, 2011).
One organization that many are aware of fighting breast cancer nationwide is the Susan G. Komen for the Cure®. There is an affiliate located in Sacramento called the Susan G. Komen for the Cure®, Sacramento Valley Affiliate. They provide services Sacramento County and 18 surrounding counties trying to provide education, resources, and funding toward the fight against breast cancer. The affiliate is the Sacramento Valley Affiliate and more can be learned about them at the link to their website at the end of this article.
The Sacramento Valley Affiliate (as with many of the other affiliates in the nation) depends very heavily on volunteers to meet goals. There are a variety of opportunities for volunteers and while most are fully aware of the Race for the Cure®, they are often unaware of other opportunities. This is why the affiliate has been holding a class for anyone interested in volunteering in their service area (counties served are shown in their service area map on the right). This class is called Komen 101 and volunteers are taught about the history of the organization, the affiliate, and the basics of breast health awareness. The goal is to not simply educate volunteers but to disseminate as much knowledge as possible in an effort to increase the number of women getting screened and reduce breast cancer diagnosis.
There are additional courses offered in which volunteers can learn about being speakers in their own communities and this is vital due to the lack of ability for the very small number of full time personnel and the large service area needing to be educated. These courses are offered usually about one time per month and an RSVP is needed to attend.
If there is an interest in learning more about helping in the fight against breast cancer then an email can be sent to Komen.Intern@yahoo.com in order to be added to the list for future courses. Please list the county you would be interested in attending a course in (more than one county is acceptable) and when something is available in your area you may be notified.
Sacramento Valley Affiliate of the Susan G. Komen for the Cure®
CDC (2011) National Breast and Cervical Cancer Early Detection Program (NBCCEDP). Retrieved 09/23/2011 from http://www.cdc.gov/cancer/nbccedp/data/summaries/california.htm
CDC (2011) Breast Cancer. Retrieved 9/23/2011 from http://www.cdc.gov/cancer/breast/