Isaac Singleton Photography
Sister Pact is an offshoot of the Memphis Breast Cancer Consortium, which itself is an offshoot of the Common Table Health Alliance.
The aim of Sister Pact is simple enough: African-American women make a pact to get a friend or family member to get a mammogram.
It’s vitally important, says Veronyca Washington, Executive Director of the Memphis Breast Cancer Consortium. Twice the number of African-American women in the area die of breast cancer, she says.
Sister Pact works as a community education program. Woman can go on the website to get information on where to get a mammogram or finding financial support. They hold events as well.
"Women ask, Why should I do it?" says Washington. "It’s important to be screened regularly. It offers better chances."
Lori Guy was approached by Sister Pact to share her story. She’d had several relatives diagnosed with breast cancer. Her sister was only 35 when she was diagnosed while breastfeeding her daughter. She died three and a half years later.
It’s not a happy ending. But, Guy says, that’s part of dealing with the disease. There are frank discussions, hard decisions. Guy says her sister got the "gift of clarity" and made the most of her time with her daughter.
"I just know my own story," she says, noting she’s been trying to be more mindful of her own health.
"I think women, particularly African-American women, say, I’ll think about that some other time," Guy says. "[They] have a tendency to put everybody’s needs ahead of their own."
Guy says it’s ultimately caring for your body and making your health a priority. "A screening is one of the many things I can do to care for myself."
Baptist Mobile Mammography Unit, Friday, October 21st, 8 a.m.-3 p.m. at the Unity Medical Center, 3960 Knight Arnold. Call for appointment: (901) 226-0826
Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk, Sunday, October 23rd, 1:30 p.m., Liberty Bowl. Information: makingstrides.acsevents.org
Komen Mid-South Race for the Cure, Saturday, October 29th, 9 a.m. Downtown Memphis. Information: komenmemphis.org
Brews for Boobs, Saturday, October 29th, 8 p.m.-2 a.m. at Flying Saucer. One hundred percent of the cover charge for this Halloween party goes to Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Awareness.