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Colon Cancer Can Be Prevented With Regular Screening

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American Cancer Society Encourages African Americans 50 and Older to Get Tested for Colon Cancer. Learn Your Family’s Medical History.

Los Angeles –The American Cancer Society encourages African American men and women 50 and older to make testing for colorectal cancer a priority. Colorectal cancer (commonly referred to as colon cancer) is the third most common cancer among African American men and women. Colon cancer can be prevented through screening, which allows doctors to find and remove polyps in the colon before they turn cancerous. African Americans should begin testing for colon cancer at age 50, but those with a family history are at higher risk and should start testing sooner.

Colon cancer incidence and mortality rates are highest in African American men and women, but colon cancer screening has been proven to reduce deaths from the disease. By decreasing the number of people diagnosed with colon cancer and by finding a higher proportion of cancers at early, more treatable stages, screening has decreased rates in California by 18 percent among African Americans.

“We have the opportunity to significantly reduce California death rates from colon cancer through regular screening,” said David F. Veneziano, CEO, American Cancer Society, California Division, Inc. “This cancer can be prevented through early detection and removal of polyps. We hope that Californians will use March – National Colon Cancer Awareness Month – as an opportunity to make screening a priority and talk to their doctors, family members and friends about getting tested. It’s a conversation that could save lives.”

An estimated 14,530 cases of colorectal cancer and 5,120 deaths are expected to occur in California. Risk factors for colon cancer include a personal family history of the disease, which makes it necessary to learn the family’s colon cancer history, and communicate findings with a doctor. The American Cancer Society recommends the following tests to find colon cancer early: Tests That Detect Precancerous Polyps and Cancer •

Flexible sigmoidoscopy every five years, or •

Colonoscopy every 10 years, or •

Double contrast barium enema (DCBE) every five years, or •

CT colonography (CTC) every five years

Tests That Primarily Detect Cancer •

Annual guaiac-based fecal occult blood test (gFOBT) with high test sensitivity for cancer, or •

Annual fecal immunochemical test (FIT) with high test sensitivity for cancer, or •

Stool DNA test (sDNA), with high sensitivity for cancer, interval uncertain.

Tests that have a higher likelihood of finding polyps and cancer are preferred if patients are willing to use them and have access.

Healthy lifestyle behaviors can also reduce risk of colon cancer. Studies show that being overweight or obese increases colon cancer risk, as do diets high in red and processed meats. The American Cancer Society recommends that African American adults engage in at least 30 minutes of moderate to vigorous physical activity five or more days a week; and consume a healthy diet that includes five or more servings of vegetables and fruits each day, whole grains (instead of processed grains and sugars), limited alcohol and processed and red meats, and controlled portion sizes. In addition, long-term smoking (for more than four decades) increases colon cancer risk by 30 to 50 percent. To help reduce cancer risk from smoking, the Society supports Proposition 29 which will appear on California’s June 5, 2012 ballot. The proposition will increase the tobacco tax by $1 and invest nearly $600 million per year for cancer research. It will keep 200,000 youth from becoming smokers and prevent more than 100,000 premature deaths, including those from colon cancer.

Thanks to improvements in prevention, early detection, and treatment, more than a million people in the U.S. count themselves as survivors of colon cancer. Regularly scheduled cancer screening can save lives and help achieve the American Cancer Society’s goal of creating a world with less cancer and more birthdays. Whether a person is worried about developing colon cancer, making decisions about treatment, or trying to stay well after treatment, the American Cancer Society can help. Visit cancer.org or call 1.800.227.2345 for free information and details about free cancer patient/caregiver support programs.

SBVC Hosts Education for Prosperity Forum

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By John Coleman

Despite the wind, rain, and cold, community members, educators, and students came out for the recent Education Community Forum, at the newly constructed San Bernardino Valley College campus (SNVC). They attended classes and workshops for prospective students and for parents (in English & Spanish). They learned about such educational opportunity programs as the "Valley Bound" program, a program designed to pay all expenses for qualified first year enrolled students at SBVC. They were provided the opportunity to meet and talk with many campus and community members who advocate for the educational success of all students.

Heart Healthy: Heart & Soul Line Dance Program

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Years before Harriette Stuckey returned to college to earn a Masters degree in Public Health (MPH), she already was working as a health educator in industrial and community services, focused on raising the awareness of health and fitness levels. Then, as she pursued her graduate- level studies, she learned that Americans of African ancestry died eight (8) or more years younger than Americans of European ancestry.

It is a known fact that within the African American community we die more from heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, diabetes, and cancer than other ethnicities. These factors can be drastically reduced by not smoking, changing our diet, and by exercising regularly.

Harriette Stuckey is a thinker as well as a doer. She has traveled extensively and seen dancing as a pleasurable behavior almost electric slide, there was square dancing. Blends, like Heart & Soul Line Dancing emerged and spread providing social- engagement while burning calories during low-impact exercises thus putting health education theories into practice within a range of seniors at community and recreation locations around the Inland Empire.

At the recent 8th Annual Mardi Gras Celebration held at the Palomares Community Center approximately 250 revelers attending from as far away as Las Vegas and the Bay Area took advantage of the opportunity to learn moves developed by health clubs springing up while learning that they can remain active and healthy by dancing.

For information about heart-healthy (quality of long life) exercise programs such as heart, body & soul line- dance programs, contact soullinedance@earthlink.net or 951.640.7888.

Fit for a Queen Prom Dress & Tux Drive

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Help Fulfill a Teen Dream! The H.O.P.E. Foundation (Helping Others Prosper Economically) and It’s Time to Pray Ministry will be having a prom dress and tux drive at The Salvation Army, 838 Alta Street, Redlands, CA on Saturday, March 17, 2012, 10am – 1pm. If it rains, we will be set up inside the Salvation Army.

The drive will benefit the “Fit for a Queen” Prom Dress & Tux Event which will provide prom attire and accessories to high school seniors who cannot afford them. Prom attire collected will allow over 100 local high school seniors to come “shop” free of charge for a dress, tux, shoes, and accessories. The Fit for a Queen Prom Dress & Tux event is sponsored by The Salvation Army in Redlands, and will hold the event at the Salvation Army facility in Redlands on Saturday, April 14, 2012.

Requested donation items are for new or nearly new formal dresses, tuxedos, men’s suits, ladies and men’s formal shoes, shawls, shrugs, ties, cummerbunds, costume jewelry, and cuff links. Please drive by and drop off your tax-deductible donations. Donations will also be accepted at the Redlands Salvation Army facility in the lobby Monday through Friday during business hours. Donation boxes are also set up during business hours at New 2 You Consignment Shop at 22400 Barton Rd., Ste. 3, Grand Terrace, CA, the Redlands YMCA, 500 E. Citrus Ave., Redlands, and the Redlands Community Center, 111 W. Lugonia Ave., Redlands, CA.

We are also looking for volunteers for the positions of personal shoppers, runners, registration, alterations, greeters, set-up, tear- down, and decorations for the event on April 14, 2012. If you are a salon or barbershop that would like to offer your services, please contact us for details at the information below. For donations or volunteer opportunities, please contact The H.O.P.E. Foundation, Inc. at 562.506.3606, or It’s Time to Pray Ministry at 909.246.0971. You may also email us at found- hope2009@gmail.com or gwenda2003@gmail.com. Please visit our website at www.foundhope2009.org. Thank you, in advance, for your contribution to the community.

NAACP Questions Rash of Police Shootings

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By BVN Staff

During a Monday afternoon press conference, the San Bernardino Branch of the National Association of Colored People (NAACP), is seeking answers to the recent increase of officer-involved shootings amongst minorities within the San Bernardino community.

“We’re a city of over 200,000,” states NAACP Chair Walter Hawkins “and it’s a city that’s basically a non-White city so the incidences we’re talking about or concerns if you have a city that’s over 70% non-White and you a have a police department that’s primarily White and you’re interacting with those citizens, that has created a problem.” The recent shooting and death of Anthony Paul Gilmore, Jr. (23) of Rialto, during a traffic stop on February 29, 2012 is only one case cited by the NAACP.

According to a police statement released after the shooting, Gilmore grabbed a weapon during a struggle with an officer. Other police shootings and misconduct and abuse of authority cases were 19-year-old Jerriel Da’Shawn Allen, killed by a San Bernardino police officer on April 14, 2007; 16-year-old Jonneshia Reese, excessive force on January 8, 2006; and Terrell Markham shot by a police officer who is now blind.

The NAACP alleges that the City of San Bernardino has twenty-three open legal cases against the city with the majority of those cases involving the police department.

NAACP Branch President, Patricia Smalls states, “The NAACP is not making a blanket statement that all police are guilty of these deadly shootings or using excessive force in the treatment of our Black and Latinos citizens. Nor or we saying that some of these incidents might not be justified as they perform their duty. However, most of these shootings involve Blacks and Latinos subjects with the same old line; I thought he was reaching for or had a gun so I shot him in self-defense.”

“If it was one shooting then it would go unchallenged as many of these have in the past. However, when you look at them as a group, as we have done; we think we have a problem in our police department in racial attitudes and a lack of police training protocols in the performance of their duties,” she continued.

The SB NAACP is seeking answers from elected officials whom they state might be “enablers” of the problem.

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