Sharsheret, Hebrew for “chain”, is a national not-for-profit organization supporting young women and their families, of all Jewish backgrounds, facing breast cancer. Their mission is to offer a community of support to women diagnosed with breast cancer or at increased genetic risk, by fostering culturally-relevant individualized connections with networks of peers, health professionals, and related resources.
Since Sharsheret’s founding in 2001, they have responded to more than 45,000 breast cancer inquiries, involved more than 4,000 peer supporters, and presented over 250 educational programs nationwide. Sharsheret supports young Jewish women and families facing breast cancer at every stage—before, during, and after diagnosis. They help women and families connect to the community in the way that feels most comfortable, taking into consideration their stage of life, diagnosis, or treatment, as well as their connection to Judaism. Sharsheret also provides educational resources, offers specialized support to those facing ovarian cancer or at high risk of developing cancer, and creates programs for women and families to improve their quality of life. All Sharsheret’s programs are open to all women and men.
Did You Know?
- One in 40 Ashkenazi Jews carries a BRCA gene mutation which greatly increases the risk of developing breast or ovarian cancer. This is nearly 10 times the rate of the general population (one in 345).
- For women carrying a BRCA gene mutation, the risk for breast cancer may be as high as 50-80%, and for ovarian cancer the risk may be as high as 44%.
- Both men and women can carry a BRCA gene mutation, and have a 50% chance of passing that mutation along to their children.
- Although the risk is greater in women, men with a BRCA gene mutation are at increased risk for breast or prostate cancer, and may be advised to undergo screening at an earlier age than recommended for the general population.
For more information about Community-Wide Teal and Pink Shabbat, please contact us HERE or 303-321-3399.
Teal and Pink Shabbat Event Ideas
- Ask a breast cancer survivor or panel of survivors to share their stories.
- Host a dinner featuring a medical expert who explains how to be proactive about your health.
- Educate mothers and daughters about Sharsheret at a women-only challah bake.
- Organize a donation drive for Sharsheret kits: Best Face Forward (makeup) or Busy Boxes (toys).
- Coordinate a Sharsheret inspired Shabbat sermon delivered by a rabbi or volunteer.
- Plan an educational program. Example topics:
- What’s Jewish about Breast and Ovarian Cancer?
- How to Best Support a Loved One Facing Cancer
- Trends in Women’s Health
What are the symptoms of ovarian cancer?
Ovarian cancer has the reputation of being a “silent killer”. But many women know, and science has confirmed, that ovarian cancer does have symptoms.
For a local Ovarian Cancer resource, call 303.506.7014 or go to http://www.colo-ovariancancer.org/
Women with ovarian cancer report that symptoms are persistent and represent a change from “normal” for their bodies. The frequency and or number of such symptoms are key factors in the diagnosis of ovarian cancer.
95% of women diagnosed with ovarian cancer report having had one or more of these four common symptoms:
- Pelvic or abdominal pain
- Urinary urgency or frequency
- Difficulty eating or feeling full quickly