Speaking up saves lives in Bristol
Thanks to Errol, more men in Bristol are aware of the signs of prostate cancer and are being diagnosed and treated.
Prostate cancer is the most common cancer which affects men in the UK, with around 1 in 8 diagnosed during their lifetime. It’s especially common amongst Black and Asian men.
When a close friend died from prostate cancer, Errol made a promise to raise awareness in the Afro-Caribbean community. From churches, prisons, barber shops and even football stadiums – Errol and his organisation, Friends of Caswell Thompson – have gone out and about speaking to men regarding the issue. Errol wanted to break down the stigma of cancer and inspire men who didn’t like visiting the GP to get screened early.
“I wanted to break down the stigma around prostate cancer, get people talking and help men to take action. Men that are screened early can be treated so they don’t have any longer term effects.” - Errol
Working together with Healthwatch Bristol, Errol organised a number of events to provide information about the risks of prostate cancer and support for families affected. He shared his own story of being diagnosed, encouraging men in Bristol to take action.
As a result, many men came forward to be screened, and over six were diagnosed with prostate cancer. Thanks to Errol, they were diagnosed early and did not have long term effects, such as impotency.
Errol and his organisation continue to speak to both the public and professionals to bring light to the issue. After the event, Public Health in Bristol wrote to all GP surgeries to explain that more men would be visiting their GP for screening thanks to Errol. Errol is also currently trying to introduce earlier screening for over 40s with Public Health Bristol.
The more that people share their ideas, experiences and concerns about NHS and social care, the more services can understand when improvements are needed. But, to make the biggest difference, we need to hear from more people.
You can make a difference. Find out more about our #ItStartsWithYou campaign or share your experience with your local Healthwatch and help make services better for your community. It starts with you.