The former Mayor of Hastings, Councillor Judy Rogers, joined around fifty local residents in a night-time lantern parade between Ore Community Centre and Downs Farm Community Centre on Friday May 11th.  The event took place to raise awareness of the signs and symptoms of cancer and involve local people in sharing the message. Mayor Rogers said  “I was delighted to join the Lantern Trail last Friday. Cancer is a very emotive word, usually spoken in hushed tones, so to be able do something very visible is vitally important to let people know it’s OK to speak about it. If enough people speak about it, more people become educated and will seek help earlier.”

The parade was organised by Hastings and Rother Community Cancer Awareness Project, which works in the local community to help improve health outcomes relating to cancer. This includes encouraging people to take part in screening programmes for cervical, breast and bowel cancers.

A market place of stalls about local services and cancer information took place before the procession, during which lanterns of all shapes and sizes made a colourful sight as they were brought through local streets.  Two lantern making workshops were organised in the run up to the parade.  Over 40 local people took part and discussed cancer awareness as they made lanterns.

David Holloway, Project Co-ordinator for the Hastings and Rother Community Cancer Awareness Project said:“We had great feedback from people who walked with us and lots of interest from people who watched”.

There has been good progress locally at increasing earlier presentation of cancer and more people are surviving cancer in Hastings and Rother compared
to previous years. 

However, figures from Public Health England suggest that there’s still work to be done. Caught at an early stage, over 9 out of 10 people will survive bowel, breast or cervical cancer.

For more information about the Cancer Awareness Project, visit Facebook or www.hastingsandrotherccg.nhs.uk

 

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