Mavis and Sasha re-opened the conversation about cancer in March 2021. This time the event was opened by Dr Rose Thompson, Chief Executive and Founder of BME Cancer Communities and Chief Executive and Co-Founder, Sistas Against Cancer. She shared her outstanding contribution and wealth of knowledge around the care and experience of diverse communities affected by cancer. This was followed by a lively panel discussion around cancer and cancer genetics to help us think about the question ‘does cancer affect us all equally?’
For our first research showcase Mavis spoke to some remarkable women about their work. There are exciting projects using genetics and genomics knowledge to answer many questions around health and disease. Yet each new application of the technology also produces and magnifies dilemmas around ethics and resource allocation. Sasha and Mavis learnt a lot through these conversation about the dilemmas and the complexity of diversity in genetics research.
This month Sasha and Mavis enjoyed hearing about the story of Sickle Cell and Thalassaemia. The event was introduced by Prof Dame Elizabeth Anionwu the first sickle cell specialist nurse in the UK. It was an enlightening afternoon spent reflecting on the experience of the Sickle Cell and Thalassaemia community and what that could teach us all about improving inclusion in genetics.
The Sickle Cell Society https://www.sicklecellsociety.org/
The UKTS https://ukts.org/
The Sound of Sickle https://www.instagram.com/tssuk_/
Our Journey, Our Story: History and Memory of Sickle Cell Anaemia in Britain 1950 – 2020 is available online at:
To mark Movember Sasha and Mavis decided to have a chat with Suresh Rambaran, a specialist nurse who has championed engagement and awareness of prostate cancer for Black , Asian and minority ethnic men.
Suresh kindly shared some links to other organisations you might want to check out.
Cancer Equality – https://cancerequality.co.uk/
Orchid (Male cancer charity) – https://orchid-cancer.org.uk/
Can survive UK – https://can-survive.org.uk/
Black women in Genetics
Our first event took place this year, on the last day of Black History Month, 31st October 2020. We started with a reflection and conversation about what it meant to be a Black woman Genetic Counsellor. Over 50 people attended this first event to hear Malebo Malope and Sasha Henriques respond to questions from Mavis Machirori on many issues around diversity, inclusion and the concerns around genetic counseling.