By Munyaradzi Nhengo
The month of October is an important month for Padare, its networks of gender conscious men, the women’s rights movement and citizens as we raise awareness on cancer, specifically breast cancer. Cancer has not only become a serious national health concern, but it has now evolved to a serious epidemic claiming the lives of numerous women across different age groups, negatively impacting families and communities. This situation can and should not be allowed to go unchecked and as such Padare and the men who stand for gender and social justice believe it is paramount that men assume a more active role in supporting women in cancer prevention and treatment. Breast cancer is not a women only concern, but it is a societal concern that require collective resolve to address it.
Early diagnosis of cancer is the panacea to the successful treatment of the same and thus men are encouraged to do everything in their power in order to ensure women and girls get quality and timely diagnosis as a means to manage the disease. Padare calls for the creation of environments which support easy and open conversation on cancer. The freedom and liberty that result from open and inclusive conversations has the potential to encourage more women to go periodic testing. It also has the potential to encourage men to invest more in eradicating cancer through provision and/or support with financial and other forms of support.
The realisation of improved health outcomes on breast cancer for women and girls hinges on the active and supportive role of men and boys. It is against this background that Padare together with other likeminded men who espouse the values of positive forms of manhood, call for increased investments towards eradicating breast cancer. It is the collective resolve of men as fathers, husbands, faith leaders and chiefs among others that cancer will be eradicated.
Padare stands in solidarity with women this October in promoting breast cancer prevention and raising awareness amongst other men so that efforts are grown beyond targeting women to targeting the family and community. Men should remain part of the matrix.