Teamwork Makes the Dream Work
At the beginning of the new academic year, I had the opportunity to give a lecture about the IMPACT program (Integrative Multimedia Program for Promoting South Asians’ Cancer Screening Uptake) to postgraduate students. My aim was to share my experience of developing the IMPACT program with my colleagues over the past 10 years and the lessons I learnt from this experience. However, the process of preparing the lecture also helped me to reflect on the importance of having a wonderful team. I was reminded that my team and I have worked wholeheartedly to serve disadvantaged groups and achieve the goal of enabling these groups’ access to cancer care services to reduce cancer disparities. The following are a few examples of my team’s dedication.
- − My team did not miss a chance to approach south Asians who were hard to reach. For example, they visited many different places to make contact with south Asians, such as rural parks, mosques/madrassas, public housing estates, construction sites, schools, community centers and grocery shops. These approaches were also made in evenings and on weekends to increase the chance of reaching eligible subjects. Finally, they used social media (ie, Facebook, WhatsApp) to individually follow up with potentially eligible subjects.
- − My team put extra effort into making the project run smoothly. For example, they contacted potential community partners individually and visited them in person to explain our project and to seek collaborations. They organized numerous training programs to ensure that we attracted a sufficient number of south Asians to fulfill various roles in our projects, such as those of data collectors, community health workers, and instructors.
- − My team continually supported each other and sought solutions rather than apportioning blame when outcomes were unsatisfactory.
- − My team devised and attempted possible solutions when they encountered problems, before approaching me for further discussion and advice.
My team’s tremendous efforts resulted in the achievement of many difficult tasks. They were able to contact south Asian residents who are hard to reach and enable them to receive health information about cancer screening and how to access such services. The sincerity of my team strengthened trusting relationships with community partners and further expanded our network. Furthermore, their dedication attracted a pool of trained south Asians to continue working with us to serve the ethnic minority community.
I am sincerely grateful to my team for their unfailingly support of the IMPACT program. Without their dedication, the program would not have been developed and sustained for a decade, nor would it have continued to expand and serve a larger population of ethnic minorities.
The enormous success of the IMPACT program is a shining example of how teamwork truly does make the dream work.
For more information about the IMPACT program, please access the following link:
http://www.nur.cuhk.edu.hk/research/research-theme-groups/cancer-and-palliative-care/cancer-prevention-and-early-detection/Copyright © 2020 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc. All rights reserved.