Another informational and engaging conference, Shedding Light on Cancer Early Detection, Treatment and Access to Care, was held for its second year on June 30, 2018 at the Kirkwood Adams Community Center in Roanoke Rapids, NC. The goal was to empower at risk populations in the Roanoke Valley area with knowledge to navigate the current health care system in an effort to improve cancer rates and rise above the bottom twenty in overall county health rankings. It focused on Prevention and Early Detection – educating women and men about risk factors and steps for reducing risks for breast, colon and prostate cancers for healthier living and Access to Care (Connection to Resources) – providing vendors and resource listings of cancer services in the area, thereby helping to remove barriers and increasing access to cancer screenings.
Key activities for the day included Interactive Educational Exhibits, three (3) speakers conducted information sessions on the special topics of prostate cancer, colon cancer, and radiation treatment; Fitness Sessions where participants were engaged in a lively line dance were held and risk assessments where the conference co-host was constantly inserting health tips and sharing website addresses with audience, referencing credible information sources such as www.nih.gov/bcrisktool. A delicious, healthy lunch was also provided.
The conference planning committee was comprised of members of all local sororities, fraternities, social clubs, civic clubs, cancer support groups, church and Masonic groups. Representatives of these organizations were responsible for communicating information to their respective groups and agreed to use health topics from the conference for further community outreach. The RVBCC targeted these groups to identify community aligned strategies, expand conference recruitment and share the vision for improved health outcomes which was identified as One Team, One Dream. Another target audience was the family caregiver, who cares for all family members.
The One Dream One Team would like to thank everyone for their support for this amazing event with over 200 attendees in addition to about 50 individuals who served as exhibitors, vendors, speakers and planning committee members. Be sure to look at the photos from the event on the Gregory B. Davis Foundation (GBDF) website. GBDF was proud to be one of the collaborating partners on this effort and served as the fiduciary agent for a conference grant made available through the N.C. Cancer Prevention and Control Branch which supported this event in addition to other sponsors.