Niagara Gazette

November 19, 2012

Raising breast cancer awareness

Staff Reports
Niagara Gazette

Niagara Gazette — A new breast cancer support group has been formed in Niagara Falls. 

Representatives from Niagara Falls Memorial Medical Center, the Niagara Falls Housing Authority, For Our Daughters, Inc. and the Buffalo Niagara Witness Project gathered Monday at the Doris Jones Family Resource Building to announce the formation of "To You it's all About Breast Cancer," or 2U ABC for short.

The organization, which is open to the public, will hold its first meeting from 6 to 8 p.m. Nov. 26 at the resource building, 3001 Ninth St. The group will focus on raising awareness about breast cancer, especially among African American women which organizers said are statistically more likely to die from breast cancer.

"The goal of this group is to not only support women with breast cancer and breast cancer survivors, but to educate women and men about preventative care and early detection tools," said Charles Walker, Niagara Falls councilman and Memorial's director of community outreach. 

2U ABC will be led by Mercedes Holloway and Tandra Parker. Holloway was diagnosed with breast cancer at age 28 and knows firsthand the challenges of battling the disease as a young mother with two children. 

Her experience led to the formation of For Our Daughters, an organization that strives to enlighten and enrich women with knowledge to promote healthy living among children in the community.

"Women who are newly diagnosed with breast cancer find themselves asking such questions as: What do I do next? How do I tell my children? How am I going to make it?" Holloway said. "Attending 2U ABC meetings and hearing the stories of those who have walked that path can help breast cancer patients cope with the treatments, the fear, even the complications. More importantly, it can give them hope."

Parker is currently undergoing treatment for breast cancer and shares survivorship with her sister, Cheryl. Her motto: "Never give up."

For more information about 2U ABC, call 957-8255.