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Think Pink in October for Breast Cancer Awareness

National Breast Cancer Awareness Month debuted in 1985 with the intention of encouraging women to get a mammogram for early detection of the disease. To this day, mammography is still the most effective way to fight breast cancer.

I bet you are not aware National Breast Cancer Awareness Month was the brain child of a pharmaceutical company, AstraZeneca, the manufacturer of two widely known breast cancer drugs: Arimidex and Tamoxifen. Needless to say, there has been some controversy over the commercialization of such an important message.

You know how I feel about that – I don’t care who started talking, just as long as the word is getting out.

Today, it’s clear that National Breast Cancer Awareness Month has made a huge impact. And as a result, many breast cancer specific charities piggy back on the huge exposure that October offers to sponsor their fundraising efforts.

If you’re interested in helping to make a difference by raising awareness or raising money, here’s just a small list of breast cancer awareness activities and events in which you can participate:

Making Strides Against Breast Cancer
This event, first started in 1984 in Boston by a breast cancer survivor, is now the American Cancer Society’s premiere breast cancer awareness and fundraising event. Since its inception, the event has raised more than $340 million dollars to support breast cancer research and services. To find a Strides event near you, go to:
Making Strides Against Breast Cancer

Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure
This nationwide fundraising event started as a local 5K in Dallas, Texas in 1983 and has grown to become the largest series of 5K walks/runs in the world. There are races taking place all over the country, with a combined total of more than 1 million participants. Find a race in your area:
Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure

National Breast Cancer Foundation
If you can afford to donate $100, you can provide a mammogram for someone who otherwise could not pay for a mammogram. You can make your donations through the National Breast Cancer Foundation. For more information, check out:
National Breast Cancer Foundation

Ride to Empower
The National Breast Cancer Network of Strength hosts a cycling event known as “Ride to Empower” every October. The Ride to Empower features a variety of routes, the longest being a century, or 100 miles. It may be too late to actually ride in the event, which takes place October 21 in Springdale, Utah, but you certainly can go online and make a contribution to a rider. For more information, check out:
Ride to Empower

You can always buy a pink ribbon, a pink bracelet, or support the numerous online and retail shops that donate a percentage of profits to the breast cancer cause. Head on over to these sites for more about that:
Pink Ribbon
Pink Ribbon Shop

My sister is a breast cancer survivor, and I have 3 close friends who have suffered through this horrible illness. It’s all around us. One day, I hope that all the pink Octobers, and every other month in between, will continue to call attention to this disease.

For even more information about National Breast Cancer Awareness Month activities, check this out:
National Breast Cancer Awareness Month

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