Charity to hold meeting at Sikh Temple to break the stigma around ethnic women’s reproductive health


A meeting about polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is being held at the Gurdwara Guru Nanak Parkash Temple in Coventry next month.

Cysters has partnered with the Temple to hold a discussion that aims to create a safe, confidential environment for women in the Asian community to discuss reproductive health issues.

The charity, which was founded four years ago, provides support for black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) women with gynaecological issues including PCOS and endometriosis.

Neelam Heera, Cysters founder and one of Birmingham’s 30 Under 30, said:

“There’s a misconception within the community that if there’s something wrong with your reproductive health then you’ve been sexually promiscuous.

“These issues are really sexualised, having PCOS doesn’t mean you’ve been sexually active.”

A cervical smear survey done by Cysters in November 2018 revealed that 77% of BAME respondents agree that sexual health is stigmatised within the ethnic communities.

A further 69% think that healthcare professionals do not understand the issues for BAME communities around smear testing.

“I’ve had to gain trust within the community, talking about gynaecological cancers is really difficult.

“It’s taken four years to get into a Temple and a lot of women are still worried about going, but it’s starting to happen.”

The meeting will take place on 2nd December and information can be found here.



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