Press Releases

American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (JDC) Partners with Susan G. Komen for the Cure® to Host First Breast Cancer Conference in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Women’s Health Empowerment Program Works to Raise Awareness, Address Challenges in Region


Michael Geller / JDC Telephone: (212) 885-0838

Jamie Epstein / JDC Telephone: (212) 885-0849

Julie Bernstein / Susan G. Komen for the Cure Telephone: (240) 601-5562

For Immediate Release

In an unprecedented event, nearly 100 medical professionals, representatives from non-governmental organizations (NGO), the government and academia, breast cancer survivors, and activists from throughout the former Yugoslavia will gather on April 11 and 12 to re-examine the battle against breast cancer. Hosted by The American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (JDC)’s Women’s Health Empowerment Program (WHEP), a partnership with Susan G. Komen for the Cure®, the world’s largest grassroots network of breast cancer survivors and activists, the two-day conference will facilitate networking, share knowledge, and develop plans to promote early detection and improve treatment for the region’s breast cancer patients.

“Breast cancer is a leading killer among women in the former Yugoslavia. Until recently, outreach, education and support for survivors have been extremely limited. This historic conference is another step for us in helping prevent unnecessary deaths,” said Nela Hasic, WHEP Director, Bosnia and Herzegovina.

In addition to presentations by the participating countries, the Conference will include the seminal meeting of the Society of Senology of Bosnia and Herzegovina, a cooperative group of all medical disciplines involved in the treatment of breast cancer.

“With more than one million women and men being diagnosed with breast cancer every year and more than 410,000 people dying from it, we face a global breast cancer crisis,” said Komen for the Cure® President and CEO Hala Moddelmog. “Sharing knowledge and creating an open dialogue with NGOs, activists, survivors, and the medical community will bring us closer to decreasing breast cancer incidence and deaths in the region.” The April conference follows recent WHEP efforts which include the launch of an educational program that incorporates school lectures and discussions with medical professionals and survivors for senior high school students in Bosnia; the “Equal Chance Against Breast Cancer,” a program that opened discussions about assisting Hungarian Romani women, who are three times more likely to die from breast cancer than non-Roma women; and a conference in Moscow, which united leaders from the region to discuss the issue. “We are happy to partner with Susan G. Komen for the Cure®, to help make a difference in the lives of those who might otherwise not have had a chance at survival,” said Steve Schwager, CEO, JDC.

Event Details:
APRIL 11 – 12, 2008
HOTEL SARAJ / Nevjestina 5 / 71000 Sarajevo

Interested parties should contact:

In the U.S.:

Itai E. Shamir – JDC

In Bosnia and Herzegovina:

Nela Hasic – JDC WHEP

About JDC

The American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (JDC) is the world’s leading Jewish humanitarian assistance organization. JDC works in more than 70 countries and in Israel to alleviate hunger and hardship, rescue Jews in danger, create lasting connections to Jewish life, and provide immediate relief and long-term development support for victims of natural and man-made disasters.

For more information, please visit

About Susan G. Komen for the Cure

Nancy G. Brinker promised her dying sister, Susan G. Komen, she would do everything in her power to end breast cancer forever. In 1982, that promise became Susan G. Komen for the Cure and launched the global breast cancer movement. Today, Komen for the Cure is the world’s largest grassroots network of breast cancer survivors and activists fighting to save lives, empower people, ensure quality care for all and energize science to find the cures. During its first 25 years, Komen has invested nearly $1 billion to fulfill our promise, becoming the largest source of nonprofit funds dedicated to the fight against breast cancer in the world. For more information about Susan G. Komen for the Cure®, breast health or breast cancer, visit or call 1-800 GO KOMEN.

About WHEP

WHEP was established in 1995 to strengthen services for women with breast cancer by creating psychosocial support programs by and for women with the disease. The Program builds leadership, creates new services (such as support groups and hotlines), strengthens doctor-patient communication, and facilitates partnerships among government agencies, NGOs and the medical and health community. WHEP projects have been carried out in countries such as the Czech Republic, Israel, and Ukraine. JDC and Susan G. Komen for the Cure have been working together in Bosnia and Herzegovina and Hungary since 2004, and in Russia since 2007.

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