Sirf Dus is a Canadian Cancer Society initiative to promote mammography in the South Asian community. Sirf Dus translates to “Just tell” or “Only ten” in Punjabi. Sirf Dus asks women to:
- Take 10 minutes of their time to talk about the importance of regular mammograms and early detection
- Take 10 minutes to get a mammogram
- Tell 10 friends – spread the word!
Promoting health is more than just sharing information–especially for cancer prevention in the South Asian community. The first step is to make it easier to talk about cancer in a culture where it can often be a sensitive subject. There are prevailing beliefs that one shouldn’t talk about cancer for fear of catching it and that cancer is an incurable disease resulting from bad karma. It’s no surprise that South Asian women are less likely to get a mammogram than the rest of the population.
The Canadian Cancer Society’s Sirf Dus initiative was conceived to address this health disparity and to challenge the taboo nature of cancer in the South Asian community. Volunteers with various backgrounds including doctors, students, cancer survivors and South Asian community members, joined forces to develop culturally appropriate educational information about mammography and then shared it.
Sirf Dus volunteers educate with a casual approach through networks of friends, family and community peers. They reach out at cultural events and temples.
Volunteers recently combined their diverse talents to create two videos promoting mammography. They are a powerful new tool to promote early cancer detection and to reduce the number of deaths.
The “Tell ten women” video embodies efforts to educate the South Asian community in a fun and positive manner. The “Screening saves lives” video is reminiscent of Bollywood style drama. Check them out!