Did you know that cervical cancer can be prevented? Today marks the start of Cervical Cancer Prevention Week 2019, seven days aimed at raising awareness of the disease and how it can be prevented.
We’re fortunate enough to work with Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust, an incredible charity helping women affected by cervical cancer. So, we recently reached out to the team to help shine the spotlight on the charity’s vital mission and learn more about how supporters can involved during this important week.
Can you tell us a little about Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust and how it came to be?
Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust is the only UK charity dedicated to women, their families and friends affected by cervical cancer and cervical abnormalities. We were established in 1999 by James Maxwell, after his wife Jo passed away from cervical cancer. It was Jo’s wish that every woman affected by cervical cancer could get the support and information they needed.
What role does the charity play in the fight against cervical cancer?
We provide information and support to improve the lives of those with a cervical cancer diagnosis, and through our campaigns and educational activities, are focused on making the disease a thing of the past by ensuring every woman knows how to reduce their risk. Through our research we aim to explore gaps in knowledge about cervical cancer and prevention that exist. We also aim work with women affected by cervical cancer and abnormalities to understand the issues faced by women during diagnosis, treatment and beyond.
Our vision is making cervical cancer a disease of the past. Every day nine women are diagnosed with cervical cancer and two women will lose their lives. The faster we act, the faster we change this.
What are some ways that supporters can involved in Cervical Cancer Prevention Week?
The number of people going for smear tests is lower than ever. Together we can change this! We want everyone to know what a smear test is for, why they’re important and ways to make them better. Post a #SmearForSmear selfie with a tip or word of support. Your post might be the reminder or encouragement someone needs to book their test, it could literally save their life. With over 1.2 million people not taking up their invite each year it’s more important than ever.
What are some of the hardest parts of fundraising?
Not having the time to meet and say a thank you in person to our incredible supporters, they are so dedicated and passionate and work so hard to fundraise for Jo’s. They save lives and help to keep the work we do running year on year. It means the world to us!
Do you have any special merchandise available for Cervical Cancer Prevention Week?
We have our specialised pack which is available to order on our shop, which includes posters, balloons and leaflets to help raise awareness of the importance of going for cervical screening. This is an incredibly valuable way for us to raise awareness during Cervical Cancer Prevention Week as across the UK we are able to advertise the importance of cervical screening and raise awareness of our services such as our Helpline.
What’s your most popular merchandise item?
Our most popular item is our pin badges as these are a really easy way to show your support for Jo’s. We have a great following from Health Care Professionals who often wear these on their uniforms prompting to remind patients of our logo and the services we offer.
How do you go about choosing the right merchandise for Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust?
As a small charity, we look for the most effective ways to get our logo and name in the public eye so that we can reach and support more women going through a diagnosis of cervical cancer or cell changes. We also consider the most cost effective ways of doing this as we pride ourselves on keeping our costs low so that our information leaflets are kept free to all who need them.
Anything else you’d like to add?
Keep an eye out on our social media for exciting updates and information during CCPW, and don’t forget to tag us in your #SmearforSmear selfies!
If your worried about your smear test or results and would like to chat to a trained volunteer please do contact our helpline on 0808 802 8000, we are here to support.
To find out more about Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust, be sure to check out their social channels above or visit their website at www.jostrust.org.uk. Interested in being featured in our next Charity Spotlight? Get in touch, and let us know!