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Community Healthy Start Coalition Celebrates Breast Cancer Awareness Month


BRADENTON – October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, as well as Hispanic Heritage Month. Healthy Start Manatee, in partnership with Gulfcoast South Area Health Education Center, held a bilingual community luncheon on Wednesday to educate women about breast cancer and empower them to be proactive with taking care of their health. Through funding from the Florida Suncoast Affiliate of Susan G. Komen for the Cure®, an inspired celebration of life was had by all. Community members participated as a tribute to the survivors and potential victims of breast cancer.


Jan Chulock, Senior Community Health Nurse at Manatee County Health Department and passionate breast health advocate, presented “Breast Health Basics,” which gave attendees information on the physiology of the breast and breast cancer, as well as risk factors that can contribute to the disease. She also underscored the critical importance of early screening and detection to help ensure effective treatment for women diagnosed with breast cancer. In addition, Anisley Valdes with We Care Manatee, which is also a Komen grantee, discussed local screening and treatment services for uninsured and underinsured women in Manatee County.

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The most touching part of the program were the personal testimonials. Sharon Carlson, a 5-year breast cancer survivor and breast health advocate, shared her journey having gone through the experience. She volunteers with newly diagnosed women and fundraises for breast cancer support organizations. Healthy Start team members and sisters - Martha Ramirez and Monica Lamas – also shared their experience, having lost their mother to breast cancer. They now work tirelessly to help underserved Latina women with all types of health and human service needs. Dr. Carla McGill, Board President of Healthy Start Manatee, closed the program by asking the audience to take the information from the session as call to action and share it widely.

This was truly an amazing event – lots of learning, sharing and caring. Funding for this event was generously provided by the Florida Suncoast Affiliate of Susan G. Komen for the Cure; the event was planned and implemented by Healthy Start Manatee and Gulfcoast South AHEC. For additional information, contact Ansley Mora, Gulfcoast South AHEC at (941)361-6602 ext. 31 or email amora@health.usf.edu or Lisa Ramirez, Healthy Start Manatee at (941)714-7541 or email lramirez@hsmanatee.com.



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