Angela Kuzilwa, Founder, Tanzania Breast Cancer Foundation

Founders Message

Welcome to TBCF

 

“Angela I’m sorry you have cancer”.

At the age of 53 back in October 2004, I was diagnosed with breast cancer. As the Doctor was explaining to me my diagnosis, I did not fully comprehend the weight of it all. At that time I had no knowledge of breast cancer, there was not enough information available, especially in Tanzania that advocated about the cancer. Many women suffered in silence and went to the hospital when it was too late. Until today cancer is still clouded and surrounded with myths and mystery. It is a taboo for an African woman to talk about your boobs.

After I completed my treatment which included surgery (mastectomy), radiation and chemotherapy I had an urge to start a support group for breast cancer survivors to meet and share experiences. I came to realize many families in Tanzania especially the women lacked education about breast and cervical cancer. I invited and encouraged breast cancer patients and those who have completed their treatment to openly talk about the difficult journeys of being diagnosed with cancer. I believe bottling your feelings up may lead to depression.

I am extremely happy to say for the past decade the story is different. I have noticed more women come out and tell their stories as breast cancer warriors openly on Radios, TV and Radio stations. We are a living symbol of hope, demonstrating that there is life after breast cancer.

From 2020 and after 11 years of tireless work, we decided its time to spread our work to cover more cervical cancer projects. We did this because we have been getting cervical survivors who wish to be counselled by us.

Cervical cancer ranks as the 1st most frequent cancer among women in Tanzania and the 1st most frequent cancer among women between 15 and 44 years of age.

As we begin this new chapter, we will continue to create awareness for both breast & cervical cancer and empower and support those people affected by them.

Our Story

Tanzania Breast Cancer Foundation has been proud to be at the forefront of breast cancer awareness, empowerment and support programmes.

Since 2008, TBCF has run numerous awareness campaigns together with the public sector and private sector.

It has also run empowerment programmes for breast cancer survivors who are living their lives to the fullest after beating the disease. It has also contributed to breast cancer patients directly through monetary support.

Running with a lean full-time team, we would have never achieved all that we set out to do if not for the volunteers, survivors, their families and donors

Our Vision

A country where all women have a chance at beating breast & cervical cancer.

Objectives

  • Shift the current state of diagnosis of breast / cervical cancer from its late stages (III – IV) to its earlier stages (0 – II) where the disease is most curable, survival rates are highest and treatment costs are lowest
  • Provide emotional and financial support to individuals affected by breast and cervical cancer
  • To co-operate and enter into engagements with relevant authorities and similar organizations to enhance outreach
  • Strive to unify different organisations that operate a population based registry with the aim of collaborating the work to establish a National Cancer Registry