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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    UA Mall concert educates about cervical cancer

    Musician Christine Baze, a cervical cancer survivor, is performing on the UA Mall at 5 p.m. today to raise awareness about cancer.
    Musician Christine Baze, a cervical cancer survivor, is performing on the UA Mall at 5 p.m. today to raise awareness about cancer.

    While cancer has the potential to change lives through hardships and even death, musician Christine Baze is working to bring about another change, a positive one.

    Baze is a cervical cancer survivor who uses her music to both inspire and inform people about the risks of cervical cancer.

    She has been touring around the country since 2002, and her next free concert is on the UA Mall at 5 p.m. today. Informational handouts and CDs will be available at the concert, said Mandy Oliden, an event organizer with the UA’s American Medical Women’s Association at the College of Medicine and a second-year medical student.

    “”I’m using my passion for music to help people,”” Baze said. “”It’s a way of kicking cancer’s ass over and over again.””

    Baze was diagnosed with invasive cervical cancer eight years ago. She did not succumb to the disease and has since used her time in a productive way, bringing an important message to women.

    “”The main message is that (cervical cancer) is preventable,”” she said. “”You have to do whatever is necessary.””

    Since cervical cancer is caused by the human papillomavirus, there are preventive measures available to assist women in preventing HPV. Among these measures are HPV tests, newer Pap tests and a new HPV vaccine, Baze said.

    “”Three shots are better than a hysterectomy,”” she said. “”No one wants cancer in their life.””

    Baze is also executive director of TheYellowUmbrella.org, an effort aimed toward spreading cervical cancer awareness and connecting with others. “”It shows those affected by cervical cancer that they are not alone, that they are “”all together under one umbrella,”” Baze said.

    The concert’s value is in its unique approach to work toward solving a problem that affects many college-age women. Whereas some events may bring in bands for a cause, Baze’s concert focuses on an individual with personal experience, Oliden said.

    “”(Baze) brings a very important message and a very exciting story,”” she said. “”And great music too.””

    Her own success since 2002 took Baze somewhat by surprise, and she has not looked back since, she said.

    “”It’s definitely not something that I expected to be doing,”” Baze said.

    Because of her own complications with cervical cancer involving side-effects that will stay with Baze for her entire lifetime, she knows the heartache and pain that can accompany trauma. Her music has helped her through this trauma, and her concerts are a way to help others in the same way, she said.

    “”When trauma happens in your life, it affects you and the loved ones around you,”” Baze said. “”I’m reliving the worst time in my life over and over again.””

    The inspiration of her music results in standing ovations and tears, and it is time that UA students are exposed to it, as cervical cancer may afflict women into their 40s, Oliden said.

    Although Baze’s success in such concerts has been widespread nationally, it is a process that never gets old, Baze said.

    “”It’s so real, because someone is hearing it for the first time,”” she said. “”It is a new time each time.””

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