October has become a sea of pink. From NFL uniforms to charity concerts and more, breast cancer awareness is doing just that–making everyone, everywhere aware. You may know causes and initiatives like the Susan G. Komen Foundation, Avon Foundation and more, but there are tons of ways you can get involved this month. To help you not get overwhelmed on where to give or how to help, check out these causes and sites below:
1. Support the newly diagnosed: Women who are dealing with breast cancer need a support system, and while friends and family may provide that, most can’t relate to what their loved one is going through. If you or someone you know has recently been diagnosed, recommend mybcteam.com, a social network strictly for women battling the disease. You can search for women in your area, read their stories, get doctor recommendations and even what medications they’ve tried to connect and get help, both medically and emotionally.
2. Support stage IV: About 30 percent of breast cancer patients develop metastatic breast cancer, an advanced form where the disease spreads to other parts of the body, most commonly the lungs, liver, bone and brain. While MBC can happen to anyone diagnosed at any stage of breast cancer, only a small majority of cancer research funding goes toward metastatic cancer of any type. To help, visit mbcaware.org, “Like” the METAvivor Facebook page or follow @metavivor on Twitter (or even just use the hashtag #MBCaware in October) and Eisai, Inc. will donate $1 up to $25,000 to METAvivor, a non-profit organization dedicated to MBC research and patient support for every social action.
3. Support those who need reconstruction: A survey from the American Society of Plastic Surgeons shows that 7 out of 10 women are never told about all of the reconstructive surgery options after breast cancer surgery, yet 89% would want to see these options before making a treatment decision. To bring awareness, the ASPS has started the first-ever BRA (Breast Reconstruction Awareness) Day on October 17. The event, held in New Orleans will be a show-and-tell for women who are diagnosed and considering surgery options to actually see various breast reconstruction procedures in person, while also getting a chance to discuss those results with breast cancer survivors who’ve had the procedure. To help raise funds and awareness, singer and songwriter Jewel has written a song titled “Flower” that can be purchased on iTunes, with funds going toward the Breast Reconstruction Awareness Fund of The Plastic Surgery Foundation. For more information on BRA Day, visit bradayusa.org.
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