Ten barbers from across Derby came together at Pride Park Stadium on Thursday with the joint aim of helping to promote awareness around prostate cancer, predominantly in the black male community.
The Pop-Up Barber Shop event, organised by Derby County Community Trust as part of their Macmillan-funded ‘Wellbeing For All’ project, saw over 100 males come for their hair cut in the stadium.
Whilst receiving their haircuts they were able to talk to their barbers who have been trained as Cancer Health Champions by the Community Trust, as well as Macmillan staff from the Royal Derby Hospital.
Jack Bell, who runs the ‘Wellbeing For All’ programme, said: “The whole ethos of this project is to get into black and ethnic minority communities to raise awareness and increase knowledge around cancer signs and symptoms, especially in cancers that are more prevalent to these groups.
“We do a lot of work around supporting cancer rehabilitation after surgery and treatment but wanted to take a step further back to actually help people realise that they can reduce their risk in the first place.
“The diagnosis rate of prostate cancer is twice as high for black males, but statistics show that they are less likely to know what signs they might be looking for or how they can make lifestyle changes to reduce this risk.
“We thought that using people they already communicate as part of their regular routine would be an effective way to get the message across, and the turnout has proved that their customers are definitely willing to get involved.”
Steve Oliver, one of the barbers present at the event, said: “I definitely think our clients open up to us, we talk about all sorts of things so why not something this important.
“There’s been more than one prostate cancer diagnosis in my family and it’s so important that males within our community know what signs to look out for.”
Denise Crouch, Macmillan Cancer Lead Nurse at the Royal Derby Hospital, added: “We know that prostate cancer is now the most common cancer in England and early diagnosis is key to survival, so we want to raise awareness of cancer signs and symptoms among these communities so people get the support they need as early as possible.”
For more information on Derby County Community Trust’s ‘Wellbeing For All’ and ‘Active Recovery’ programmes, please visit derbycountycommunitytrust.com/programmes/health.