Objective: In an effort to evaluate the effectiveness of faith-based health promotion programmes in educating African American women about breast cancer knowledge and risks, the local affiliate of a national breast cancer research foundation funded the Genesis Health Project (GHP) Network, a community-designed, culturally competent intervention, to develop, implement and evaluate the Breast Cancer Awareness and Education Program. This article reports on the faith-based education model used and uses evaluation data to determine whether the intervention improved awareness of breast cancer risk, methods for reducing risk, the importance of early detection and the availability of low-cost or free mammograms. Design: Pastoral health messaging and culturally appropriate strategies were used to heighten awareness of breast cancer risks and prevention, promote mammography and early detection, increase awareness of free/low-cost mammography and encourage the adoption of healthier behaviours. Setting: African American churches and collaborators targeting African American women in a mid-sized city in the northeastern USA. Method: Summative evaluations used paper and pencil pre- and post-event surveys, with measures for objectives targeted by the programme to evaluate the impact of activities. Results: Overall, participants in the Breast Cancer Awareness and Education Program showed improvements in general knowledge about breast cancer, higher breast cancer mortality among African American women, warning signs, risks and ways to mitigate risk, and the availability of low-cost or free mammograms. Conclusion: Findings confirm that faith-based health promotion programmes can be effective in helping to educate inner-city African American women about breast cancer and associated risk factors.
- African American women
- breast cancer
- faith-based health promotion
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health