AFRO-Caribbean men are being urged to take part in Reading Lions annual prostate cancer screening.

Thousands of people are expected to head to Circle Hospital on May 12 to get tested and hopefully receive a green letter giving them the all clear.

The Lions club have made an appeal for afro-Caribbean men to get involved this year, as studies suggest they are twice as likely to develop prostate cancer.

Victor Koroma, manager of the Association for Cohesion and Racial Equality, says the annual event has given him the gift of life following an unexpected diagnosis last year.

He said: "I received an amber letter informing me that my PSA was over the medically accepted limit for a man of my age and was advised to go and see my GP.

"I ended up visiting a specialist at the Royal Berks Hospital and after a biopsy and I was told I had prostate cancer. In August last year, I had a prostatectomy and I am now completely cured.

"The period between receiving the results from the Lions and my operation, me and my family went through very anxious times. I ended up appreciating my wife more than ever before, as she stood by me throughout the entire trauma.

"The lions are doing a great job and I constantly encourage anyone who cares to listen to me to attend their annual prostate cancer awareness events. I did that and as a result I am still alive. I thank God."

Dozens of men likely to learn they have been living with cancer without even realising.

More than 4,000 people have already taken part in the first five years, with nearly 300 of those being told they have cancer.

John Mack, event organiser, added: "This is a simple blood test. Many men think it is digital and it puts them off. The number of letters and phone calls that we get saying thank you for saving my life every year is wonderful.

"The best symptoms to have for prostate cancer is no symptoms. If you catch it at an early stage it is still in the prostate and that is curable."

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