LUPUS AWARENESS MONTH
In honor of Lupus Awareness Month, the Lupus Foundation of America released a new survey they recently commissioned which reveals the need for better public understanding of this devastating autoimmune disease and why early diagnosis is so important.
According to the Lupus Foundation of America, the results of the survey show “while lupus affects an estimated 1.5 million people in the U.S. alone, 63% of Americans surveyed have never heard of or know little or nothing about this disease that has no cure. The survey sample was designed to be reflective of the U.S. population’s diverse demographics. Women of color are at two to three times greater risk for developing lupus than Caucasian women. However, over half of respondents (62%) didn’t recognize that minority populations were disproportionately impacted by lupus.
Minority women tend to develop lupus at a younger age, experiencing more serious complications and have higher mortality rates. This was reflected among minority respondents who indicated they were also more worried about developing the disease than others surveyed: 44% compared to 29% of the sample overall.
While it was promising that a significant percentage of Hispanics and African Americans surveyed indicated they were either very familiar or somewhat familiar with lupus, including 43% of Hispanic respondents and 54% of African American respondents, there are still considerable gaps in the understanding of lupus signs and symptoms which are crucial for early diagnosis.
To address this, the Foundation has an ongoing national lupus awareness and education campaign, Be Fierce. Take Control® that aims to raise awareness of the signs and symptoms of lupus among Latino and African American women ages 18 – 25: a population at higher risk for the disease.” For more information visit www.lupus.org
In 2008, the US House of Representatives designated July as Bebe Moore Campbell National Minority Mental Health Awareness Month, which is now known as National Minority Mental Health Awareness Month.
The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) reports that “racial and ethnic minority groups in the U.S. are less likely to have access to mental health services, less likely to use community mental health services, more likely to use emergency departments, and more likely to receive lower quality care. Poor mental health care access and quality contribute to poor mental health outcomes, including suicide, among racial and ethnic minority populations.”
To be valued and loved. To know who you are and that you have the power to make a
difference. These are the aspirations that most mothers have their children. In 1938, in the midst
of the Great Depression, twenty African-American mothers in Philadelphia came together not to
hope or to dream, but to provide the opportunities, experiences, and life lessons that would
enable their children and others to live these truths. Their group became Jack and Jill of
America, Inc. – an organization that’s mission is as relevant today as it was some 80 years ago.
This June, The Black Women’s Agenda, Inc. (BWA) joins our nation in celebrating the 40th Anniversary of African American Music Appreciation Month.
The month-long observance, which was first inducted on June 7, 1979, by President Jimmy Carter was christened as Black Music Month. President Barack Obama renamed the national observance as African-American Music Appreciation Month. The observance was created to recognize and celebrate the historical influence African-Americans have had on the music industry and is intended to pay homage to the many artists, writers, songs and albums that have inspired music lovers and shaped American pop culture.