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California Breast Cancer Research Program (CBCRP), Tobacco-Related Disease Research Program (TRDRP), Commonweal and The Orange County Asian and Pacific Islander Community Alliance (OCAPICA) invite you to join us for: 

A luncheon to explore Community Based Research on Breast Cancer and Tobacco-Related Disease

Wednesday, December 5, 2018; 10:00 AM -1:00 PM   

West Fresno Family Resource Center1802 E California Ave, Fresno 

Please RSVP to Heather Sarantis at:

Together we offer QuickStart, a program to help build capacity for California’s communities to partner with scientists to engage in research focused on breast cancer and tobacco-related disease. We are looking ahead to QuickStart 2019 to reach out to potential participants for our program and we need your help. 

 The QuickStart program, which is offered free of charge, supports community members and scientists to conduct research together that:

  • comes from the concerns of communities affected by breast cancer and tobacco related disease, 
  • builds capacity for community groups and organizations to advocate on their own behalf, and
  • focuses on the role of environmental exposures and health disparities increasing the risk for breast cancer or tobacco-related diseases.

Upon completing the program teams are prepared to apply for research funding from CBCRP, TRDRP and other funders. Our past participants have been quite successful in receiving funding for critical research projects. 

Based on the work you do, we think our program may be either a match for you, or you may know people who would be interested in learning more, or both. We believe that you represent an important perspective on the issues communities are facing, whether it is environmental exposures or health disparities (both those that increase risk for breast cancer and tobacco related disease or exist within breast cancer, tobacco use and tobacco-related diseases among priority populations), providing culturally appropriate support for women experiencing breast cancer, reducing tobacco use in all its forms or exposure to secondhand smoke, addressing industry marketing of tobacco products to communities of color and young people, or a larger perspective of the environmental health and justice issues affecting California.

We would like to tell you about our program and then discuss you or other potential participants we could follow up with to discuss the possibility of applying. In exchange for your participation in the luncheon you or your organization will be offered an honorarium of $100.00.

We hope you can join us for lunch and a good conversation. We have included more information on our organizations and our training program below. You can also see our webpage and video at RSVP to Heather Sarantis at  

Please note, this invitation is only for you. If you would like to suggest someone else be invited, please contact us directly at We will send more information as the date approaches. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us. 


Mhel Kavanaugh-Lynch, Director, California Breast Cancer Research Program

Heather Sarantis, Women’s Health Program Director, Commonweal

Mary Anne Foo, Executive Director, OCAPICA

Norval Hickman, TRDRP



What is Community-based Participatory Research?

Community-based Participatory Research (CBPR) is research conducted by a partnership that includes at least one community Co-PI and one scientific Co-PI. Together, as equal partners, the partnership decides which research questions are most important to them, determines how to study these questions, gathers and interprets data, and communicates findings to other community members, scientists, and the general public. By combining the knowledge and interest of communities with the expertise and resources of research scientists, partnerships are responsible for conducting research that answers important questions in a way that has immediate impact on knowledge, programs, and policies.

What is the QuickStart training?

QuickStart is an innovative face-to-face and online program for both newly forming and experienced collaborative community-academic research partnerships. Collaborative partnerships include two Co-Principal Investigators (Co-PIs). In each partnership there must be one community Co-PI and one scientific Co-PI. QuickStart will provide in-person, online, and phone-based technical assistance to stimulate community-based participatory research (CBPR) that addresses breast cancer, including the environmental causes of and/or disparities in breast cancer, prevention of breast cancer, or other topics.

It is expected that enrolled partnerships who are based in California and complete the program will be prepared to submit competitive grant applications to CBCRP Community Research Collaborations (CRC) awards during Cycle 25, in the spring of 2020, the Tobacco-Related Disease Research Program (TRDRP) for a grant type focused on community participatory research, in the fall of 2019 or winter of 2020, and to other funding sources. 

QuickStart is supported by the National Cancer Institute of the National Institutes of Health under Award Number R25CA188482. The content is solely the responsibility of the trainers and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institutes of Health. 

About the Organizers

California Breast Cancer Research Program

CBCRP is the largest state-funded breast cancer research effort in the nation whose mission is to eliminate breast cancer by leading innovation in research, communication, and collaboration in the California scientific and lay communities. One of the primary funding mechanisms is the Community Research Collaboration (CRC) Awards, which provide $150,000 to $600,000 of funding (plus indirect funds) for partnerships of California-based community organizations and research scientists. CBCPR also funds the California Breast Cancer Prevention Initiatives, which focus carefully crafted research initiatives on the effects of the environment on the development of breast cancer, why some groups of women are more likely to get breast cancer or to die from the disease, and breast cancer prevention.   

Tobacco-Related Disease Research Program

The Tobacco-Related Disease Research Program (TRDRP) funds research that enhances our understanding of tobacco use, prevention and cessation, the social, economic and policy-related aspects of tobacco use, and tobacco-related diseases in California. TRDRP is solely funded through the tobacco tax and individual contributions. We support critically needed new priorities that represent gaps in funding by other agencies or are areas where other agencies are reluctant or unable to provide support. Since TRDRP’s inception, we’ve funded more than 1,200 research grants on tobacco-related studies, with 95 percent of our revenue going directly to funding research and education efforts. TRDRP revenue is used to make grants for California scientists and community researchers to find better ways to prevent and reduce tobacco use and its related diseases. 


Founded in 1976, Commonweal is a nonprofit health and environmental research institute in Bolinas, California. Commonweal seeks to engage in educational, charitable, and research activities, which contribute to the health of individuals, to public health, and to the health of the global environment.  Programs include the Commonweal Cancer Help Program, the Institute for the Study of Health and Illness, the Juvenile Justice Program, the Collaborative on Health and the Environment, the Regenerative Design Institute at Commonweal Garden, the Commonweal Biomonitoring Resource Center, and The New School at Commonweal. For more information on Commonweal and its programs, see


The Orange County Asian and Pacific Islander Community Alliance (OCAPICA) is dedicated to enhancing the health, and social and economic well-being of underserved communities in Orange County, California. Established in 1997, OCAPICA serves more than 40,000 community members a year through programs in health, mental health, education, youth development, workforce development, and civic engagement.  OCAPICA has more than 100 staff that speak 26 languages including ASL.

Heather Sarantis
Women’s Health Program Director
In difficult times, always keep something beautiful in your mind. 
—Blaise Pascal