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I’m sure you’ve all seen #SmearForSmear doing the rounds on social media. If you don’t remember the hashtag then you may remember the photos celebrities/influencers were sharing of themselves with smeared lipstick.

The hashtag was started by Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust (formally Jo’s Trust) and in this blog post, I’d like to tell you more about the charity behind the hashtag.

Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust was created by a London businessman by the name of James Maxwell. James set the trust up to memorialise his wife Jo, who sadly died from cervical cancer at the age of 40.

Jo was diagnosed with cervical cancer back in 1995. Both Jo and her husband struggled to find any real information about every aspect of cervical cancer. They both hoped that one day in the future everybody would be able to access up to date information and medical advice.

Jo also wanted there to be a facility available so other women who had cervical cancer would be able to talk to others who were going through the same thing.

Jo’s Trust became operational in February 2000. Since the opening, the trust and their supporters have worked hard to raise awareness of cervical cancer, what causes it, and how to prevent cervical cancer.

In 2010, Jo’s Trust rebranded and became Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust.

Up until I researched this post, I’ll admit I hadn’t heard of the charity behind the hashtag so I found their website really interesting.

Their website is full of useful information so if you do have an abnormal smear result, look there first. Their website is www.jostrust.org.uk

This year as part of the #SmearForSmear campaign, Jo’s trust would like everyone to share the facts about HPV and smear tests.

Please share any posts you see on social media this week with #SmearForSmear as it’s so important to get the message out and please encourage all the women in your life to make sure their smear is up to date. 

If you have a friend who’s scared to go for a smear alone, go with her. As women, we need to help and support each other. Men, if your wife/girlfriend/mum/sister/friend is due a smear, encourage her to go. If you see a letter letting them know it’s time, remind them to book their smear. 

Cases of cervical cancer in women aged 25-29 has increased 54% since the 2015/2017 period compared to the 2004/2006 period according to figures published in the Independent on 22nd January 2019. They suspect the increase is down to fear of having a smear. 

Jade Goody tragically died from cervical cancer in 2009 aged 27. Her death and the publicity surrounding it caused there to be an increase in the number of women going for their smears.

Unfortunately, the “Jade Goody effect” has waned and the number of women going for their smear has decreased. 

During Cervical Cancer Prevention Week 2020, I’ll be posting a little more frequently and sharing blog posts to raise awareness.

Lis x

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