3rd February 2016
All too often we witness the dangers of tanning become a reality, with over 13,000* new skin cancer cases being diagnosed each year.
Claire Dale, founder of the Irene Parker Skin Awareness Message tells us why she’s calling upon the beauty industry to step up and play their part in reducing this number.
A vivacious, positive and loving woman, my late mum Irene was an avid gym goer who took immense pride in her health and physical appearance. You might even say that she was the picture of health.
Sadly all wasn’t as it seemed. In 2006 mum had a malignant mole removed from her abdomen. Six years later, she was diagnosed with stage IV malignant melanoma and lost her battle with skin cancer on New Years Eve 2014. Not a day goes by where she isn’t deeply missed by her friends and family.
Throughout this difficult time, I couldn’t help but wonder if things could have turned out differently. What if we had we spotted it earlier? Early detection of Melanoma is key to survival rates, so not one to sit around and do nothing; I contacted Melanoma UK to tell them about my idea.
Inspired by mum’s enthusiasm for life and her passion for health and fitness, I decided to use mum’s legacy to launch the Irene Parker Skin Awareness Message – a campaign aimed at educating others on the dangers of not checking your skin.
Whilst dermatologists and GPs continue to play a vital role in skin awareness and the early detection of Melanoma, it occurred to me that the health, beauty and fitness industry, which employs over a quarter of a million people, is well positioned to offer this vital skin safety message.
Hairdressers, personal trainers, physios, and beauticians come into close contact with people’s skin on a daily basis, but currently lack confidence and training in skin cancer awareness. Perhaps if they did, mum’s story could have turned out very differently.
We’re calling upon beauty and fitness professionals to get in touch and become one of our ‘skin safe partners’ to help us on our mission to detect melanoma early. Going beyond your duties by giving your client something extra could one day save their life.
If you work in the beauty, health or fitness industry and want to know more about the training on offer then please contact Claire at firstname.lastname@example.org
You can also follow the campaign on Twitter @clairedale or visit www.melanomauk.org.uk
*British Association of Dermatologists
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