New committee raising loads of awareness in Lexington

As we ramp up our efforts to raise awareness this March for Colon Cancer Awareness Month, we wanted to highlight some of the amazing work being done by our Lexington committee.

Newly formed in 2015, the Lexington committee of the Colon Cancer Prevention Project has already made their mark in the community, raising awareness and promoting timely cancer screenings. On March 4, Lexington’s Herald-Leader featured a huge spread that focused on Colon Cancer Awareness Month and all of the Project’s efforts.

The Herald Leader piece not only celebrates the accomplishments of the Lexington committee, but also provides invaluable information about colon cancer, screenings, and legislation which established 100% coverage by insurance for Kentuckians. March is an important month for colon cancer awareness groups and the Lexington committee has plenty planned to mark the occasion. In addition to the Herald Leader piece, Lexingtonians will notice the blue lights illuminating the Helix Garage downtown, in honor of the month.

In addition, Committee member, Brenna Angel, will be sharing her story on the CW, WKYT’s sister station. Angel will also discuss the Project on the show, which will highlight colon cancer awareness and education, as well as her own experience receiving genetic testing for colon cancer in her twenties and, as a result, receiving colonoscopies every two years.

We’re so excited about the Lexington Committee’s amazing work and enthusiasm. They really hit the ground running in 2015, holding a viewing event for the film, “Catching a Killer,” a Colon Cancer Prevention Project documentary, airing on KET. In addition, they hosted a breakfast to spread the Project’s mission and goals with potential supporters and oversaw a 2015 educational campaign that aimed to raise awareness about the importance of timely screenings through bus stop ads, mailers, and billboard.

“We knew there was a need to have grassroots-style awareness in Lexington, and we’re thrilled to have such a dedicated group of volunteers making it happens,” said Andrea Uhde Shepherd, Executive Director of the Colon Cancer Prevention Project. “This is part of our long-term plan to start a satellite branch in Lexington, as well as other communities across the state.”

In September of 2016 (Date TBA), the committee will organize and host the Colon Cancer Prevention Project’s first ever 5k in Lexington, known as the Kicking Butt 5k. This year marks the 11th running of the 5k in Louisville, an event that draws more than 1,500 supporters and runners.

We have a long road ahead of us. As of 2013, Kentucky still ranks No. 1 for colon cancer incidence and No. 4 for colon cancer mortality in the U.S. Fortunately, thanks to the fact that more Kentuckians are receiving screenings, mortality from the disease dropped 32% in the last decade. That’s a number to take heart in.

The Lexington committee meets monthly. If you’d like more information about the committee or how you can get involved, please contact Patty Francis, the Project’s Program Director, at or (502) 290-0288.