In 2001 the first free education and screening project was organized in the slum communities by the QSCBC. The project is planned over two days and is dependent on donations. On day one, the medical, nursing team and volunteers teach the community women about the risks of breast cervical cancer in the slum communities, alleviating the fundamental fear the women have of both diseases. The experience of breast and cervical cancer in the slum communities is fear, so often they will have seen neighbours or family, die from untreated tumours, in appalling home conditions, due to lack of funding and access to care. On day two of the project, they are transported to the QSCBC for full breast and cervical examinations, including mammography, ultrasounds and pap smears. Volunteer social workers work alongside the team to assess whether the women are genuine candidates and visits are made to their homes to ensure that all donated funds are used for the women most in need of help.
The women included in the project are on a minimum daily wage, if they do not work they will not have money to feed their families. The outreach project therefore provides food and childcare on the day of screening at the QSCBC, to alleviate any anxiety the women may have and to encourage them to attend. The children have fun activities organized and the women also enjoy cosmetic make-overs while they wait for their examinations, as result the screening day becomes a very positive day out, rather than something they should fear. When the women return to their slum communities they become advocates of the project to other women encouraging them to join the project.
The results are sent back to the women and when necessary the patients are treated at the QSCBC using donated funds or the Government scheme [which does not include screening], but only if the patient can return to their home province, a trip so often they cannot afford.