Continuing the conversation with Leanne Pero, founder of Black Women Rising UK - a foundation that creates more awareness amongst people of colour and cancer awareness and how she found her community during what seems to be quite a lonely time.
What is the importance of community? When in your journey did you intentionally seek to find your community? How did you build your community?
Community is everything when going through a cancer diagnosis & treatment. A cancer diagnosis can be incredibly lonely. Friends who you once knew would drop everything when you needed them…disappear. In our community, we don’t talk about having cancer for fear of judgement so our circle of support becomes very small. And for many they have no support at all.
Being able to meet and talk to likeminded people and having those who know what you are going through is vital.
I didn’t find my community until after my treatment had finished, and I had to set up a charity – The Leanne Pero Foundation – to make that happen, not the simplest solution. However my hope is that our projects will mean that no one has to go through cancer alone.
If possible to share, what are the most common questions or topics of interest that emerged in your podcast, Black Women Rising- The Untold Cancer Stories Podcast
We have covered many important issues within both series of our podcast including; sex and cancer, race and cancer, mental health awareness, employment advice, living with Stage4 cancer. What became very clear was that more needs to be done to support cancer patients during and beyond their treatment.
Did you know?:
Many women women of colour find the process of shopping for underwear, in particular bras post-surgery absolutely frustrating due to pricing, lack of options, the popular colours amongst a 'weird beige' hue and overall a little dated. We spoke with a few friends/family of the brand who shared their wants in lingerie range from colour, softness, matching options, undetectable styles (that doesn't scream cancer patient) to continue doing what lingerie does - evoking femininity, comfort with some elements of sexiness.