For a long time, many African women have held negative views towards natural hair, considering it too coarse and unruly to be professional or desirable, and opting for relaxers and weaves. Relaxers are chemical treatments which permanently alter the natural structure of the hair, turning it from curly and kinky to bone-straight.
In recent years, however, there has been a shift in attitude and aesthetic across the continent, with more women choosing to wear their natural hair out. Driving this movement is the awareness that relaxer chemicals can cause serious damage to one’s hair and scalp, and indeed most women have the horror stories or even bald patches to prove it. Relaxer chemicals have also been linked to increased risk of cancers in women.
Mercury and hydroquinone are prevalent in many hair and skin cosmetics in Uganda & Africa, according to recent studies by the World Health Organisation. These elements are linked to kidney damage, skin discoloration, scarring and skin cancers. Research also shows links between black women’s hair relaxer use and the risk of uterine fibroid tumors due to chemical exposure through scalp lesions and burns.
In Uganda, The Good Hair Collective is a young company that sets a safe beauty standard for our women, by manufacturing natural plant-based hair and skin care products.
We recognize the urgent need to move away from cancer-causing ingredients such as phthalates, mercury, parabens, lead, etc. and towards safer ingredients.
We reach out to women, men and children with organic handmade hair and skin care products including shampoo, hair conditioner and whipped butters, all made in Uganda, using locally-available plant-based ingredients such as Shea and Cocoa butters, avocado oil and hibiscus extracts.
A publication by The Good Hair Collective one of our partners this October for the #EachOneReachOne campaign.
Join us & support our work by buying a wristband for only 5000shs from Good Hair Shop in Kisementi store & buying Good Hair’s Berry Smoothie deep conditioner. Part-proceeds will go to breastIT’s work.
Growing up, the news of someone dying of cancer never scared me or even made sense to me until recently.
First my friend invented a mobile application to help people to detect breast cancer by using a glove that is placed on your breast and you are able to view your results on your phone. For those that don’t know the application. check it out here – BreastIT.
This is a very cool application but then I am this kind of person who doesn’t let something go by without asking why. I wanted to know the story behind this cool app so I went a head and inquired why my friend had invented the application and his motivation was that a close relative had died of breast cancer. He was so much concerned that he and a couple of his friends invented this application so that people should test and know their statuses without all the hustle and costs that were involved before the application was made so that it’s easy and convenient for people to know their cancer status and I liked his idea the more I saw its uses and how it will affect so many people.
I read more about cancer on my own, its causes, effects on your body, how it spreads to other body parts, the different types. The more I read about it the more cancer scared me. it is likely that you reading this has some type of cancer but you may not know until you go for a diagnosis or until its late when it starts showing signs.
But none of everything that I read about cancer really scared me the way the death of my uncle did.
Just last week I lost an uncle to throat cancer and the reason was; it was diagnosed too late and he had been a normal healthy person until he got a cough that couldn’t go away. when he went to the hospital it was discovered that cancer had eaten away his throat so he couldn’t eat nor drink anything. The only drugs that they were giving him during his chemotherapy treatment were out of stock in the country. The only option for him and his family was to wait for his death.
This is the most painful thing that can happen to anyone where you see someone in too much pain and losing so much weight and you can do nothing about it. This was a very painful experience for him and the family and all well wishers who came to see him. There’s nothing as painful as waiting for your death but you can avoid all this.
Cancer can be suppressed once detected early. Early diagnosis is still the number one prevention measure for any cancer. For those that don’t understand what the above statement means, let me break it down for you; Go to the cancer institute or any clinic or hospital that does cancer testing or screening and ask them to test you for cancer so as to be able to know your status.
You never know this one test could save your life from this silent killer disease and make that appointment with your doctor. Visit that hospital or clinic after reading this and know your cancer status. Tell your friends to tell all their friends as we spread the word during this cancer awareness month to go test and know their cancer statuses.
BreastIT is a cheap and portable solution to breast cancer detection in Uganda. Three Makere University IT graduates, Moris Atwine, Kabwama Alvin Leonard and Lwangwa Mwesigwa David designed the smart product, which is made up of a mobile app and a glove. In this interview, we speak to Atwine about his team’s award-winning innovation. – Kate Walker from Design Indaba
Moris Atwine talks about his team’s award-winning breast cancer detection app in the video.
A Screenshot of Moris Atwine talking about BreastIT
Follow this link to watch BreastIT: A cancer-detecting glove
One Health Central and Eastern Africa (OHCEA) will be holding its 2nd International One Health Conference in Kampala – Munyonyo Speke Resort Hotel from 16th – 18th November, 2015. This event is expected to attract a large number of stakeholders for deliberations on issues affecting human, animal health and the broader ecosystem.
OHCEA is a network of 14 Public Health and Veterinary higher education institutions of learning from 6 countries in East and Central Africa. The other OHCEA partners include the University of Minnesota and Tufts University. OHCEA aims at driving transformational change for continuous improvement of health and wellbeing of humans, animals and eco-systems through multi-displinary; research, training and community service.
A number of activities have been organized for this event and one of them is a Conference Exhibition. The exhibition will provide an opportunity for stakeholders to interact with policy makers at different levels and at the same time display their products.
BreastIT will be exhibiting after being identified as an integral part of the One Health concept and activities.
For more information, visit http://ohcea.org/ or follow @AfricaResilient on Twitter!
Moris Atwine, a third year Computer Science student at Makerere Universitytogether with two other students, Alvin Kabwama, a fourth year electric engineering student and David Mwesigwa, a third year computer science student have developed an mHealth solution that detects breast cancer. They decided to come up with the technology to ease cancer diagnosis, mostly in people with a family history of the disease…
Read more via Breast IT to combat breast cancer in Uganda