Did you know that 1 in 9 women in Canada will be affected by breast cancer in her lifetime? The good news is, the earlier it's detected the easier it is to treat. With scientific advancements by the really smart people out there, we are getting closer to a world where the words "You have breast cancer" won't be so scary. We can get there in our lifetime, but it takes work. And money. Lots of money. Research is bloody expensive.
I have just registered for the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation CIBC Run for the Cure on Sunday, October 3, 2010. It's Canada's largest single day, volunteer-led fundraising event dedicated to raising funds for breast cancer research, and education and awareness programs. It's a mouthful, but it's important.
Disclosure time. When I'm not on maternity leave, I work for the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation. Yes, CBCF is technically my employer and it's a hell of a fulfilling reason to get up every morning, but that is not why I raise money for the Run. I have known people living with breast cancer, and through my work with the Foundation I now know a LOT more. These women (and men - yes, men can get breast cancer too) are amazing. They speak publicly about their experiences with breast cancer, encouraging people to get annual mammograms, to know their own bodies, and to speak with their doctors if they feel anything is out of sorts. They are strong and inspiring and I am running for them.
The reality of working so closely with this disease is that I also know women that have died, and I know a lot of families that have lost loved ones. Fewer and fewer people are dying of breast cancer, but people still do. This isn't good enough. I truly believe we can get to a "future without breast cancer." This doesn't necessarily mean a cure, but we CAN get to place where it's detected early enough and the treatment is so minimal that it won't limit the way you live your life.
If you're in Canada and want to register for the Run in your area (it happens in 56 cities across the country), go to www.cbcf.org. It's an awesome, one day event where you can walk or run 1 or 5K with thousands of people all in it for the same reason - a future without breast cancer. If you aren't able to participate, please consider making a donation. Every dollar makes a difference.
Thank you. Public service announcement concluded.