Fellow Feature with Joyline Chepkorir, Founder of Mwangaza Cancer Initiative

About Joyline

Joyline Chepkorir received her Bachelor of Science in Nursing with a minor in health promotion from Michigan State University (Honors College) in 2020. She later worked as a registered nurse in a medical-oncology unit at Sparrow Hospital in Michigan. She is currently pursuing her doctoral study at Johns Hopkins University School of Nursing with an interest in breast and cervical cancer prevention and control in Sub-Saharan Africa. She has dedicated her time to volunteering in marginalized communities in Kenya and the US, with projects aimed at decreasing existing knowledge gaps in breast and cervical cancer. She is also a co-founder of Mwangaza Cancer Initiative (MCI), a registered community-based non-profit organization in Kenya with 28 volunteers. Recently, Joyline received the Urban Health Institute 2022 Baltimore Health Equity Impact Grant for the OWEL Cancer Education and Awareness Program.

About the Mwangaza Cancer Initiative

Launched in 2018, the Mwangaza Cancer Initiative provides training for marginalized women in Kenya on methods for early detection of breast and cervical cancer. It also connects these women to community resources where they can receive free or low-cost screening and treatment once cancer is detected. The organization is committed to raising awareness of breast and cervical cancer among women and the need for prompt screening procedures to enhance early detection and treatment of cancer, which reduces cancer mortality rates.

Joyline’s Recent Work

Over the years, the organization has provided over 4,000 women and 500 families and community members with information and resources on the two cancers in high schools, health centers and social media platforms. MCI has also become an associate member of the Advanced Breast Cancer Global Alliance. In August of this year, they delivered supplies to aid in cervical cancer screening and management to the Kericho County Referral Hospital in Kericho, Kenya. MCI recently held a breast cancer education seminar on October 31st 2021. The panel brought together experts and survivors of breast cancer to educate women and girls about the disease and answer their questions. Joyline’s team has also been consistently fundraising for the Kenya Cancer Association, which provides treatment to breast cancer patients in Kenya who do not have health insurance.

Of the Resolution Fellowship, Joyline says: “Being a Resolution Fellow made me find my niche in breast and cervical cancer prevention and control. It is for this reason that I decided to pursue a PhD in nursing at Johns Hopkins University, with research focus on breast and cervical cancer prevention in Sub-Saharan Africa.”