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United Kingdom (Essex) Network

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Welcome

sharon jack outreach coordinatorWelcome to the home page for the United Kingdom - Essex for FORCE: Facing Our Risk of Cancer Empowered! Here you will find information on our local efforts to provide information, support, awareness, and advocacy for individuals and families affected by hereditary breast and ovarian cancer.

Our United Kingdom (Essex) Network peer support group leader is Sharon Jack. Please contact Sandy Cohen if you are unable to connect with local volunteers.

Hi. My name is Sharon Jack and I am delighted to be a FORCE peer support group leader in the UK.

Prior to my ovarian cancer diagnosis I had never heard of BRCA, did not realize there was a link between breast and ovarian cancer and was totally unaware of my risk. My grandmother and an aunt both died of ovarian cancer as well as having had breast cancer. I went to a genetic counselor and underwent genetic testing. While looking for answers on the internet, I came across the FORCE website. Finally, some answers to my questions, and from people who had similar experiences. I applied for and was very generously awarded a scholarship to attend the FORCE conference in 2010 and what a wealth of information, experience, and expertise I found there, along with wonderful caring people. On my BRCA journey I discovered that my aunt and three cousins had tested positive for the BRCA1 mutation many years prior to me getting cancer but I had not been aware of this information. This is one of the reasons I am so keen to promote awareness of hereditary breast and ovarian cancer risk. Knowledge is power and provides choices. Ignorance may be bliss but cancer definitely is not!

How can I help?
Do you have a family history of breast and/or ovarian cancer? Have you tested positive for BRCA? Are you considering genetic testing? You are not alone. FORCE exists to improve the lives of individuals and families facing hereditary breast and ovarian cancer. Would you like to learn from other people who are navigating the BRCA path or help someone else by sharing your story. If you would like to be involved or come to an informal get together please email sharon_jack@btinternet.com.

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FORCE:Facing Our Risk of Cancer Empowered