Some of the main barriers to the improvement of cancer care in South Africa are the relatively low placing of cancer care on the political agenda, socioeconomic problems, cultural beliefs and practices, poor ratio of treatment services to population and lack of cancer advocacy. PLWC undertook a photovoice advocacy project to highlight the challenges that cancer patients face in South Africa.
The aim was to provide a workshop forum where the thematic content analysis of the photovoice data could be used to direct and stimulate cancer advocacy discussion, planning and implementation.
Strategy / tactics:
The strategy of a stakeholder advocacy workshop was used to as a process whereby stakeholders could receive feedback about the thematic content analysis of the photovoice data and also be introduced to the four-levelled ‘call to action’ advocacy framework that was developed for this purpose.
Delegates were then divided into facilitated groups for discussion. Through the medium of various workshop activities, delegates were encouraged to discuss advocacy initiatives that could be taken back to their own organisations for implementation or further development for implementation . A joint call to action was also developed to drive and give momentum to cancer advocacy initiative in South Africa as a joint cancer NGO community
Accurate information about cancer challenges enables more targeted and appropriate advocacy efforts in a diverse population. Offering a workshop that encourages representatives to discuss advocacy projects that can benefit their respective communities is appropriate and productive. In dealing with vulnerable and under-privileged communities it is necessary to offer input of an empowering nature to support cancer advocacy initiatives.
At the time of the UICC World Cancer Conference in December 2014 it will be possible to report more specifically and fully on the advocacy outcomes of this workshop process.