Did you know that Ashkenazi Jewish men and women are at a 10x greater risk than the general population of carrying the gene mutation that can lead to breast cancer? We didn’t either. But with October being National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, now is the perfect time to educate yourself – and help spread the word – about the realities of breast cancer and other related cancers.

There are lots of great national organizations dedicated to educating people about breast cancer. In the Jewish community, Sharsheret is leading the way. Particularly with their Have the Talk campaign, which encourages people to talk to family members to find out their own family cancer history, and empower others to do so as well. This month, get involved:

    • Pledge to Have the Talk.: Sign up here to pledge to find out your family’s cancer history by or before November 28, 2012.
    • Encourage friends to do the same. Every person you convince to learn their own family history is another person who is empowered to take control of their own heath.

Host a Have the Talk Day on campus. College students can host a special Have the Talk day on their campuses. Choose a date, set up a table with info from Sharsheret, decorate the table in pink (and bake some cupcakes to entice passers by!), then encourage other students to take the pledge themselves.

Find out more ways to get involved with Sharsheret’s work and spread the awareness about breast cancer here. And learn how to protect yourself and your loved ones with an Early Detection Plan here.