UNC Breast Cancer and the Environment Research Program (UNC BCERP)


As Community Partners of the UNC BCERP Investigators, the UNC Center for Environmental Health and Susceptibility’s Community Outreach and Engagement Core (COEC) is coordinating outreach activities.  We are identifying the scientific and health-related educational needs of young African American women and the health practitioners who provide services for them. The Community Partner also works with researchers to develop and implement responsive educational materials and to build bidirectional communication between them and community audiences.

UNC BCERP’s Community Partner has conducted the following activities:

  • three black womenWe conducted focus groups involving African American women to determine knowledge, attitudes and beliefs about breast cancer and identify effective ways of communicating breast cancer risk to this target audience.
  • To gain an understanding of the educational tools and methods that healthcare providers use to convey breast cancer risk information to women, we conducted interviews with 34 health professionals in central North Carolina.
  • COEC staff are using data from focus groups and health practitioner interviews to develop appropriate print and interactive educational materials.
  • We convene meetings of a Community Advisory Committee (CAC). Our CAC provides ongoing feedback on communication tools related to breast cancer risk. Members represent the health professions, advocacy groups, survivors, and lay audiences of young African American women.
  • We have developed and tested communication tools and interactive activities with lay health advisors in the “Educate Our Women” program of a local health department in central North Carolina.

Outreach materials

For information on UNC BCERP outreach activities, contact Neasha Graves at (919) 966-3746 or neasha_graves@unc.edu.