The award-winning #SmearForSmear campaign returns for another year, with the aim of encouraging women of all ages, ethnicity and diversity to attend their smear tests.
The campaign, created by Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust, is now in its second year. During the first movement, the trust reached over 500 million people and gained huge support from the public and celebrities including Rita Ora, Cara Delevingne and Georgia May Jagger.
Since the first campaign ran, the latest screening data has shown that attendance of smear tests among 25-29 year olds has increased in both England and Scotland. However, one in three in this age group still do not attend their smear tests.
Smear tests can detect abnormal cells on the cervix before they turn in to cancer, yet last year out of the 5.6 million women in the UK who were invited, a huge one in 4 did not attend and this figure is declining year on year. Previous research by the charity found 26.2% worried it would be embarrassing, 29.5% think cervical screening is not important to have regularly and 48% don’t openly discuss cervical screening with their friends.
Robert Music, Chief Executive for Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust said, “Cervical cancer is a preventable disease and we cannot afford for incidences to keep rising. So it is a matter of urgency that we see positive actions to turn around the downward trend in cervical screening uptake and we are urging policy makers and health professionals to increase investment in targeted approaches to tackle barriers to screening for women of every age, ethnicity, location and circumstance.”
To join in with the campaign and raise awareness of cervical cancer, the charity are calling for participants to smear their favourite lipsticks, take a selfie and upload it via Facebook, Twitter and Instagram using the hashtag, #SmearForSmear.
For further information regarding cervical cancer and about Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust, click here.