Power Over Breast Cancer Gathering connects, empowers community

The UF Health Cancer Center’s Power Over Breast Cancer Gathering on Oct. 21 provided an opportunity for about 100 Black women, family members and other members of the Gainesville community to learn about breast cancer from UF Health oncologists and get support from each other.

A woman in a pink dress speaks with a microphone in front of a projector screen with a welcome slide.
Carolyn M. Tucker, Ph.D., speaks during the Power Over Breast Cancer Gathering at Springhill Baptist Church on Saturday, Oct. 21.

The gathering at Springhill Baptist Church included presentations on breast cancer treatment and prevention by UF Health oncologists Lisa Spiguel, M.D., and Adeline M. Deladisma, M.D., M.P.H. It also allowed attendees to discuss the impact of breast cancer in small group discussion sessions, ask questions during a panel session, and get information about UF cancer research studies and health resources.

The gathering was presented by the Cancer Center’s Community-Partnered Cancer Disparities Research Collaborative (CDRC), directed by Carolyn M. Tucker, Ph.D., and the Cancer Center’s Office of Community Outreach and Engagement.

“Our goal is to empower everyone with the knowledge needed to prevent and make good decisions about the treatment of breast cancer, to inspire us to reach out and touch the hearts and hands of those who are impacted by breast cancer, and to foster participation in research that aims to help prevent or effectively treat breast cancer,” said Tucker, the UF Florida Blue Endowed Chair in Health Disparities Research and a research professor in the UF department of psychology.

“The gathering calls attention to the fact that it takes a village of diverse women and their families, researchers and clinicians coming together to reduce the incidence of breast cancer and breast cancer deaths and to reduce cancer disparities.”

Carolyn M. Tucker, Ph.D., Director of the Community-Partnered Cancer Disparities Research Collaborative

The CDRC consists of eight local Black churches and their community scientists and technology coordinators and a group of faculty members and administrators at the Cancer Center who are working as partners to help prevent and reduce cancers among Blacks living in or near East Gainesville.

The gathering was the third event in the Cancer Center’s Power Over Cancer series, which aims to empower community members by providing high-quality health information and create a dialogue about the cancer prevention, care and research that occurs at or with the support of the center.

“Our goal is to bring down the barriers so everyone has access to the most appropriate, cutting-edge cancer prevention, screening, care and long-term survivorship services,” said Jonathan D. Licht, M.D., director of the UF Health Cancer Center.

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