WE CAN held our fourth East African Breast and Cervical Cancer Education, Outreach and Advocacy Summit on March 24-25, 2017. The 2-day summit and workshop was held at The Radisson Blu in Kigali, Rwanda. Learn more about the 2017 Rwanda Summit
The Women’s Empowerment Cancer Advocacy Network (WE CAN) and our partner the US National Cancer Institute Center for Global Health, held our third East African Breast and Cervical Cancer Education, Outreach and Advocacy Summit April 22-23, 2016. The 2-day summit and workshop was held at The Fairview Hotel in Nairobi, Kenya. This two-day program included a day focused on clinical education of breast and cervical cancer and a workshop day focused on building advocacy skills, sharing of practices and developing advocacy goals. This year’s summit aimed to improve understanding of metastatic disease. Learn more about the 2016 Nairobi Summit
The seventh WE CAN Eastern Europe/Central Asia Breast and Cervical Cancer Advocacy, Education and Outreach Summit was held in Bucharest, Romania, October 22-23, 2015. The Summit was co-sponsored by WE CAN at Seattle Cancer Care Alliance/University of Washington, the U.S. National Cancer Institute Center for Global Health and HomeCare Association/Asociatia "Ingrijire Acasa," and brought together survivors, advocates, medical professionals, policy makers, government representatives, and others from 16 countries in the region.
The second East Africa Women’s Empowerment Cancer Advocacy Network (WE CAN) Breast and Cervical Cancer Advocacy, Education and Outreach Summit was held in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania Sept. 11-13, 2014. The 2014 Summit was co-sponsored by WE CAN at Seattle Cancer Care Alliance/University of Washington and the U.S. National Cancer Institute Center for Global Health in collaboration with local hosts WAMA and MEWATA. The Summit brought together over 65 survivors, advocates, medical professionals, policy makers, government representatives, and others from 10 countries. Learn more about the 2014 Dar es Salaam Summit
The 2013 Eastern Europe/Central Asia WE CAN summit was held in Tbilisi, Georgia, October 15-16, 2013. This was our sixth conference in the region and we will be continuing to work towards advocacy and awareness building. In partnership with the National Screening Center of Georgia, we hosted representatives from over 10 countries. Learn more about the 2013 Tbilisi Summit
Our first conference in Africa! Building on Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center’s collaboration with the Uganda Cancer Institute in Kampala, Uganda, WE CAN has established strong ties with the Uganda Women’s Cancer Support Organization. In 2010, we organized a focus group in Uganda on barriers to cancer care in Africa. In 2013, we organized an East African Summit on breast and cervical cancer in partnership with the Breast Cancer Initiative of East Africa and the Uganda Women’s Cancer Support Organization.
Learn more about the 2013 Uganda Summit
In 2011, WE CAN returned to Vilnius, Lithuania. Agne Zuokene, the founder of Nedelsk, was now a Parliamentarian, elected in large part due to her visibility in work promoting women’s causes. The summit included tours of clinic facilities, a two-day conference held in Lithuanian Parliament, and a reception at Vilnius Town Hall hosted by the mayor. Representatives from 15 countries, predominantly from the former Soviet Union, participated.
The fourth Eastern Europe/Central Asia Breast Cancer Advocacy, Education and Outreach conference was held in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan in conjunction with the local health and poverty NGO Ergene. Highlights included tours of the Kazakhstan Pink Ribbon bus and opening comments by Parliamentarian Roza Otunbayeva (who shortly thereafter became president of Kyrgyzstan).
A “Nutrition, Fitness, and Cancer Prevention” initiative was launched by the Shanghai CDC in conjunction with our 2008 Shanghai Women’s Cancer Summit. This initiative brought together and educated more than 300 community physicians and volunteers in the Shanghai area, and distributed more than 100,000 leaflets with information on nutrition, fitness and cancer prevention.
Our 2007 summit was held in conjunction with Belorussian breast cancer advocates from the “In Rays of Hope” NGO. Representatives from NGOs of 12 countries were brought together to coordinate their nation-wide efforts in breast cancer outreach. US Ambassador Karen Stewart supported and attended the conference, an act viewed as promoting democracy. In a country such as Belarus, where many civil liberties are still thwarted and suppressed, such empowerment was a significant achievement. For more information, check out the First Belarus Breast Cancer Advocacy Conference Fulfillment Report.
The Shanghai Center for Disease Control (SCDC) launched a “Women’s Cancer Awareness Campaign” in conjunction with WE CAN. This campaign included mass media outreach to college students and working women, and workshops and charity programs.
Our second forum was planned to coincide with the annual March For Life and Hope organized by the Ukrainian breast cancer support group, Amazonki. Delegates from 11 different countries including Ukraine, USA, Russia, Lithuania, Georgia, Moldova, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Estonia, Romania and Belarus gathered together to connect breast cancer advocates and physicians from across Eastern Europe and Central Asia.
The first WE CAN Eastern Europe/Central Asia Breast Cancer Advocacy, Education and Outreach summit was held in Vilnius, Lithuania. The Lithuanian breast cancer non-governmental organization (NGO) Nedelsk served as host and a key partner in this summit. Participants included breast cancer survivors and health care providers interested in promoting breast cancer advocacy from throughout the former Soviet Union. Nedelsk, which translates to “Don’t Wait,” was incorporated that year, and their Pink Bus, which travels to remote locations in Lithuania to deliver messages of women’s health, was unveiled at the WE CAN conference.
(collaboration with PATH)
Our network assisted PATH in its project to improve health care for Ukrainian women with breast cancer. Educational materials were developed for doctors and patients and seminars were organized in Ukraine to destigmatize breast cancer and connect survivors and advocates. These seminars spawned the development of 15 breast cancer support groups around Ukraine, a country that previously had no survivor groups.
With early detection and access to treatment, cancer is survivable. (Producer/Writer Penny LeGate, Protographer/Editor Danny Gadd, 6-minute video, filmed in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, September 2014)