What am I doing?
Most folks who know me know that I am very passionate about Susan G. Komen for the Cure - and that I have put my feet, my time, and my money where my mouth is. Since 2003, actually! Why? Because I deeply believe in a world without breast cancer, and I believe that together we can get there!
And, yes, I am proud and honored to continue to be part of an organization, Susan G Komen for the Cure San Diego, that is so clearly making a difference in the fight against breast cancer!
I have spent time in these past few years speaking at various fundraising events, and to various groups, and have even been on the radio and TV multiple times. I am putting my mouth and voice and passion where only my feet used to be. I love being able to inspire others to make a difference, as I know that our efforts really are making a difference.
I want to see and live in and experience a world without breast cancer! But until that day arrives, there are many many women (and men) and their families who need our help. And I am beyond proud that the Komen San Diego organization does just that - gives them the diagnostics and treatments and life-supporting help they need, be it meal delivery or child care while going through treatment, or patient navigation help to figure out the best way to get through the system, when uninsured or underinsured. You can join me in making a difference in the lives of so many people!
I continue to fight this fight in the name of my three little nieces. Looking at them, perfect and healthy and innocent, I know that I don't want these little girls to ever know anything about breast cancer! I want it to be like polio was for me - just something you read about in history books. Help me create that world for them, for all the other little girls around, and even for us grown-up girls, who don't want to fight this fight anymore!
And I continue to fight for the many women (and men) I have in my life who have fought this fight successfully, who have lost this fight, or who care about someone fighting this fight. I continue to be amazed - and saddened - at how many people in my life have been touched by breast cancer. But I continue to be encouraged by the progress being made with early detection and new diagnostics and treatments developed every single year, making a huge difference in life during, and after, breast cancer!
75% of all money raised through the Komen San Diego Race for the Cure stays in San Diego to help real people with real needs the very next year. Last year, $1.1 million was invested by the San Diego affiliate from the money raised last year - here are the details for the local grants: http://komensandiego.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/Community-Grants-Sheet-2015-2016.pdf 25% of the money raised is sent to National to be pooled with monies from other affiliates around the country and is granted out nationally for research grants. It is estimated that San Diego receives around $3 million from national in research grants, due to the high level of research organizations in this county. Next to the U.S. government, Susan G. Komen for the Cure is the largest funder of breast cancer research in the world.
I have learned over the years that almost everyone I meet or connect to has been affected by breast cancer in some way, so I have learned to ask, and not to hesitate to ask, as it is much more personal for folks than I ever know.
What can you do to help?
1) Support my walk with a tax-deductible donation of any size and method. It all adds up! Big or small, I won't ask for an amount, as that's up to you! My goal is to make a difference and save lives, and every bit counts!
2) Participate in the Race for the Cure! Sunday, November 6th in Balboa Park. And, if you don't feel like getting up early in the morning on a Sunday, you can still register, but as a "Sleep in for the Cure" participant! NO shame in that, and we welcome that! :)
3) Talk about this walk and this cause to even one more person - awareness-building is just as important, and can make such a difference to that one person. You can even encourage that person to donate or fundraise as well! Let's put the power of us all together to make a difference!
People often ask if there is a certain amount that I ask for in my fundraising, and, as I mentioned, I never have. I'd prefer that people give whatever feels right for them. One thought, though, is something that Komen started in 2008 - the 125 Challenge. The average cost of a life-saving mammogram is $125. Imagine how many more women and men we could help if every participant in the Race just raised $125!
Breast cancer knows no boundary, be it age, gender, socio-economic status, or geographic location. One in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetime. That's one in eight within your family, company, school, or group of friends! Scary to think about, but, unfortunately, completely true.
Komen San Diego will not stop until we discover and deliver the cures. That's our promise.
We Will Find the Cure! And until we do, we will be helping thousands upon thousands of women and their families with diagnostics, treatments, financial help, meal delivery, child care, and anything else needed in this fight for their lives!