What do you know about prostate cancer?
My awareness of prostate cancer is really something very close to home, my uncle died of prostate cancer, I was very fond of him. It was a very painful experience for me, so when I was approached quite a few years after to be involved with Prostate Cancer UK, I just didn’t hesitate.
I also encouraged Eastenders to do a storyline about prostate cancer, which they did in 2014 with the character Stan Carter played by Timothy West - that raised quite a lot of awareness.
I also encouraged Eastenders to do a storyline about prostate cancer, which they did.
Where do you draw your strength from?
I draw my strength from knowing I have a contribution to make, and continue making, in society. I also draw my strength from older members of my family, including my aunties and my mother. They guided me when I was younger and I could always go and speak to one of them. My mother, although she was very, very strict, was an awfully strong woman – and I mean very, very strong – she brought up three kids, me and my two sisters, on her own. So there isn’t just one thing that has given me strength, there’s quite a number of things that put together give me a lot of strength.
Why do you think black men tend to ignore prostate cancer?
One in four black men will get prostate cancer - those statistics are not encouraging. My background, coming from the Caribbean, we have a mentality where we don’t talk about anything to do with our private parts. It’s to do with our pride and being macho. Prevention is better than cure and if you capture something like prostate cancer early, then you stand a better chance of beating it.
Why are you supporting the stronger knowing more campaign?
I’m supporting the campaign because prostate cancer has affected my family and friends around me, including friends I grew up with in Trinidad. So it is extremely important that we spread the word.