Taking action against cancer

2016-07-05 06:00
From left are Shirly Paulse (chairperson of Women Taking Action), Nomaindia Mfeketo (Deputy Minister of International Relations and Cooperation), and Sabelo Mzanywa (Malmesbury area commissioner) at the pap smear and glucose screening launch held in Malmesbury.

From left are Shirly Paulse (chairperson of Women Taking Action), Nomaindia Mfeketo (Deputy Minister of International Relations and Cooperation), and Sabelo Mzanywa (Malmesbury area commissioner) at the pap smear and glucose screening launch held in Malmesbury.

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Women Taking Action from Tokai in partnership with the Department of Correctional Services West Coast launched a pap smear and glucose screening in Malmesbury event on Sunday 26 June.

About 150 women from various farms in the vicinity were invited to be tested.

The event was hosted at the Malmesbury Correctional Centre with the Malmesbury prison band as well as a comedian at hand to entertain the women for the afternoon. At the event, Women Taking Action handed out Teal Ribbons to all the guests to raise awareness of cervical cancer.

Shirly Paulse, chairperson of Women Taking Action, was moved to action when she heard about the backlog in the public health system with pap smear testing.

“All too often one hears of breast cancer and Aids campaigns, but never of cervical cancer and early detection of the disease can save lives. The Cancer Association of South Africa revealed that statistically more than 3400 women are lost to cervical cancer annually. So with this launch we want to reduce the number of people who die because of cervical cancer,” she says.

Women Taking Action believes that it is time for the private sector to share in the responsibility of fulfilling the vision of government to take care of the poor.

“We want to assist in raising awareness with the support of government departments. We believe that together we will be that change that we want to see in our less fortunate communities. We will be going around the communities to help those that need us the most,” adds Paulse.

Nomaindia Mfeketo, Deputy Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, was the guest speaker for the day. She offered the women some inspiring words and assisted Women Taking Action with the handing over of toiletries, scarves and pashminas.

Paulse secured the services of Precedence Laboratories who agreed to come on board to do the free pap smear testing for the women. Those who attended the event were given a wholesome hot meal, cooked and served by offenders from the Department of Correctional Services, Malmesbury. The event ended in a high tea prepared by Women Taking Action.

Paulse says all stakeholders were delighted with the success of the event and Women Taking Action have resolved to continue to do regular programs in less fortunate communities to make the change.

V To learn more about the organisation and the work they do, visit www.womentakingaction.org

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