Raising awareness about breast cancer

Morgan Engels, News Editor

In recognition of breast cancer awareness month, Madison College peer health educators are delivering breast cancer awareness kits to students. 

This is the second year that the peer health educators have carried out this event. It is meant to raise awareness and educate students about breast cancer. 

“We wanted to raise awareness and educate people about breast cancer,” said Sam Johnson, a Madison College peer health educator. “Most people think that it is only for older women and young men, but it is also common in men and young women.” 

While according to the CDC breast cancer is most common in women over the age of 45, an average of 9% of new cases each year are amongst younger women. Meanwhile, an average of 2,000 men are diagnosed with breast cancer each year. 

In a troubling trend, most cases of breast cancer amongst women under the age of 45 are detected in later stages, according to CDC. Breast cancer in later stages is more aggressive and difficult to treat. 

Inside the breast cancer awareness kits recipients will find a pink ribbon pin, a button and a pair of socks to wear, along with instructions on how to self-screen. By handing them out peer health educators are hoping to not just motivate people to help others, but to also take necessary steps to help themselves. Johnson says she hopes people will take potentially lifesaving actions such as early self-screening and receiving routine mammograms.  

“Early detection can save your life,” Johnson said.  “taking these small steps is potentially lifesaving.” 

The deadline to sign up for a kit was Oct. 22. Because delivery of the kits can take up to three weeks, that process is still ongoing.  

This year students have been able to pick their kits up in person on both the Truax and Goodman South campuses. Last year, because of  COVID-19, everything had to be done online and by mail. 

Throughout the year the peer health educators are also involved in a number of initiatives, including helping out in the food pantries located on the Truax and Goodman South campuses. 

At the food pantry they hand out food and personal care items for students and put on weekly events where they educate students about health and wellness. They also raise awareness and educate students on programs such as BadgerCare and food stamps. 

“As peer health educators we are here to educate students and bring awareness to different events,” Johnson said. 

Students who are looking for information on breast cancer can contact [email protected] or visit the student health clinic.