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‘Together, Gather’ Campaign Emphasises Importance Of Female Friendships In Beating Breast Cancer

The Together, Gather Breast Cancer Awareness campaign includes four interactive online workshops featuring live Q&As with breast cancer experts, offering the public rare direct access to their expertise and a documentary series featuring a breast cancer survivor who shares practical insights from her experience.

Dr Mastura Md Yusof (third from left), Dr Kiley Loh (fifth from left), Dr Nur Fadhlina (fourth from right), Lim Kim Foong (third from right), Lim Po Lin (second from right), breast cancer survivors, breast cancer patients, campaign sponsors and representatives of BCWA and TalkHealthAsia.com at the launch of the Together, Gather campaign. Photo courtesy of TalkHealthAsia.com.

KUALA LUMPUR, August 29 – In conjunction with Breast Cancer Awareness Month in October, digital healthcare literacy platform TalkHealthAsia.com has joined forces with Breast Cancer Welfare Association Malaysia (BCWA) to launch the “Together, Gather” Breast Cancer Awareness Movement.

Through the conduit theme of female friendships, the movement carries two objectives: 

  1.  To encourage early diagnosis
  2.  To help women learn about different breast cancer subtypes so that they understand different treatments are necessary to match their breast cancer subtypes.

To achieve the two objectives, there will be four interactive online workshops featuring live Q&As with breast cancer experts, offering the public rare direct access to their expertise.

Attendance is free, but registration is required due to limited capacity:

  • Breast Cancer 101 (September 19, 2023): Dr Mastura Md Yusof and Dr Teoh Mei Shi
  • Triple Negative Breast Cancer (September 21, 2023): Dr Yip Cheng Har and
  • Dr Nur Fadhlina
  • Hormone Breast Cancer (September 26, 2023): Dr Kiley Loh and Dr Saladina Jaszle
  • HER2 Breast Cancer (September 28, 2023): Dr Ng Char Hong and Dr Doris Chow

Workshop attendees stand a chance to win complimentary breast screenings, hotel stay giveaways and dining vouchers from popular cafes.

Beyond the workshops, the Together, Gather movement includes a documentary series featuring a breast cancer survivor who shares practical insights from her experience.

To help women remember the key screening and diagnosis recommendations, a sing-along jingle has been written specially for the Together, Gather movement.

Additionally, there is a #ShakaHook challenge for social media sharing, with the most creative entries having the chance to win a prize.

The official launch of the movement took place at Colony @ KLCC on Saturday, August 26, 2023. Guests at the launch included: BCWA’s president Lim Kim Foong (Kim Lim); founder of TalkHealthAsia.com Lim Po Lin; breast cancer specialists Dr Mastura, Dr Loh, and Dr Nur Fadhlina; breast cancer survivors; breast cancer patients; campaign sponsors and representatives of BCWA and TalkHealthAsia.com.

In her opening speech, Kim Lim highlighted the importance of breast cancer awareness outside of Pinktober: “At BCWA, we believe that the conversations about breast health and breast cancer awareness should not be confined to once a year. It should be a topic that we speak about for 365 days.”

Po Lin shared why the upcoming workshops on breast cancer subtypes are important: “We need a movement, a movement of education. It is time we bring breast cancer education to the public, and not just to the doctors.”

Meanwhile Dr Loh, breast oncologist at Penang Adventist Hospital said the ‘Together Gather’ movement provides him with an opportunity to reach out to a wider segment of the public. “Not just breast cancer patients in particular, but people who have not been affected by breast cancer as yet.”

Dr Nur Fadhlina, clinical oncologist at University Malaya Medical Centre, has a friend whose mother was diagnosed with late stage breast cancer and kept even those close to her in the dark about it.

“She hid it from everyone including her own husband, because she felt that there was a huge stigma, that people didn’t want to talk about it.

“I want to be here to talk about the things that women feel they can’t talk about. We need to dive deep into the reason why many women are diagnosed late,” said Dr Nur Fadhlina.

Dr Mastura, clinical oncologist at Pantai Hospital Kuala Lumpur said that women must realise that they could get breast cancer because it has become so common.

“No more talking about what foods can cause cancer, or how to prevent cancer,” she said.

“As women, we need to be prepared, know what symptoms to look out for, see a doctor and get an early diagnosis.” 

She also maintained the importance of togetherness in accomplishing anything, providing as an example, how she works together with her colleagues to help patients and educate them.

“Never do anything alone. When you are together creating a voice, you create a voice that is much louder.”

The Together, Gather movement seeks out synergy from world-renowned breast cancer specialists, hospitals, corporate organisations, hotels, notable associations, beloved cafes and more.

These combined contributions will create momentum for shifting women away from apathy towards a proactive mindset.

Click here for more information and to be a part of the Together, Gather campaign.

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