Guest blog post from Susan Brown, Director of Education for Susan G. Komen for the Cure®
I was in Minneapolis at General Mills earlier this month to talk about breast cancer. General Mills responded to our challenge asking large employers to take action to communicate to their employees the value they place on breast cancer education and screening during Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Dr. Julia Halberg, VP Global Health Services and Chief Medical Officer and Kris Haugen of the Global Health team had invited interested employees to learn about breast cancer and what they could do to take charge of their breast health.
A great group of women gathered. They asked questions. They shared experiences. Several breast cancer survivors were there and shared their stories, giving living testimonials about the benefit of screening and early detection! Members of an ongoing cancer support group held right there on the General Mills campus were in the group. They offered words of encouragement, warmly invited other women to join their group, exchanged email addresses, and stayed after to chat as sometimes women do…
Many thanks to General Mills for ACTING – to support this educational opportunity, for ensuring that the women and their families at General Mills are empowered to take control of their health by accessing preventive health services – and by encouraging ongoing cancer peer support groups! We’re grateful for all of our partners who support employee health programs like these. During Breast Cancer Awareness Month, we’ve asked major companies to provide programs that inform and support employees facing breast cancer.
More than a dozen companies representing more than 400,000 employees committed to doing so, including:
- ACH Food Companies
- American Airlines
- Key Bank
- MulvannyG2 Architecture
- New Balance
- Seattle’s Convention and Visitors Bureau
- State Farm
- Texas Instruments
- Virginia Mason Medical Center
- Washington Biotechnology and Biomedical Association
I was just delighted to visit General Mills’ campus and see this kind of support in action. AND, I got to tour the BETTY CROCKER KITCHEN!!! A bonus for me!
We were delighted when five leading scientists and advocates were named “Champions of Change” by the White House last week. We know the five – Dr. Amelie Ramirez, Ann Partridge, Anne Marie Murphy, Elyse Gellerman and Robin Prothro – to be among the most dedicated and game-changing individuals in the breast cancer movement. Ramirez and Partridge advise Komen on scientific programs. Gellerman and Prothro are leaders in our Affiliate network. Murphy runs the Metropolitan Chicago Breast Cancer Task Force working to end disparities in breast cancer outcomes for minority women. What do these leaders think are the next challenges in the breast cancer movement? They’ve written down their stories to share with us through the Champions of Change website.
September 29, 2011 Breast Cancer, Global, Komen Events, Komen News, Komen Programs, Mission, Partners & Sponsors
On September 24, our Fourth Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure took place in Vilsonovo Setaliste, a beautiful park, in Sarajevo. This has definitely become a tradition here in Bosnia, and was our kick-off event for October, Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
More than 5,400 people registered for this event, and traveled to Sarajevo from 20 different cities. Some have even traveled as far as 300 miles to participate in the Race, and left their homes very early in the morning to be there by 11:00am.
Our Race Chair, Danuta Moon, wife of U.S. Ambassador to Bosnia, was very helpful with the organization. Especially with the media promotion and with securing the participants of other Embassies including Kuwait, the Embassy of the Palestinian Authority, Switzerland, France, Sweden, Brazil, Italy, Turkey, Ukraine, and Croatia, making this event quite global, reminding us that breast cancer is still a global crisis.
The Embassy of Kuwait, also awarded us with 5,000 Bosnian Marc (about $3,500 U.S. Dollars) that we awarded to 5 local partners in a lottery for various breast cancer programs in Bosnia-Herzegovina. Additional local VIPs and governmental representatives participated as well.
US Ambassador, Patrick Moon, was the key speaker, also acknowledging JDC and Susan G. Komen for their work in Bosnia-Herzegovina, and for the profound impact of our activities on so many women and their families. Additional main speakers included the Mayor of Sarajevo, and Bosnia’s President’s Chief Advisor for International Affairs.
As always we delivered prizes to the first three runners and prizes to our local partners who have been so prominent in helping us to arrange this Race. The U.S. and Swiss Ambassadors also ran with their security guards, and came in the top 10 runners! All prizes were donated by Samsung Croatia, and additional sponsors like Nestle, provided food and drinks and other small prizes for survivors. We also had a few local stars performing, keeping the crowd very excited and engaged.
At the end of the Race, we invited all survivors on stage for a photo, in their pink Race t-shirts, giving breast cancer a public image, singing and dancing to I Run for Life by Melissa Etheridge!
All in all it was a very successful and beautiful event, celebrating life and survivorship as well as honoring those who lost their battle with this disease. The atmosphere was very special, and it warmed my heart to see Bosnians from different cultures and ethnic groups, from all ages, including many mothers and husbands and their children come together in this fight which is still quite a taboo in Bosnia.
Pictures from the Susan G. Komen Bosnia-Herzegovina Race for the Cure are in the slideshow below.
September 15, 2011 Breast Cancer, Breast Cancer News, Education, Global, Komen Leadership News, Komen News, Partners & Sponsors
Susan G. Komen is taking leadership again today in the breast cancer movement with the announcement of a new, multi-year partnership with GE. Komen Founder and CEO Ambassador Nancy G. Brinker and GE chairman and CEO Jeff Immelt announced the partnership today, aimed at bringing new technology and innovation to the breast cancer movement to dramatically improve breast cancer outcomes for women in rural areas and developing countries.
In the U.S., the Komen/GE partnership will start with screening initiatives for Wyoming, one of the least densely populated regions of the country, and to Saudi Arabia and China, with an aim of overcoming medical resource and education issues that may affect screening rates.
GE also announced a $1 billion cancer research and development commitment, and a $100 million innovation challenge to find and fund ideas for better breast cancer diagnostics.
Today’s partnership announcement follows our announcement Tuesday of a new partnership with the George W. Bush Institute, the U.S. State Department and UNAIDS to bring breast and cervical cancer screening to existing HIV/AIDS platforms in Africa. That program is called the Pink Ribbon, Red Ribbon partnership.
Read more over at the GE Healthymagination Blog.
September 13, 2011 Breast Cancer, Breast Cancer News, Education, Global, Komen News, Komen Programs, Mission, Partners & Sponsors, Pink Ribbon Red Ribbon
During travels in Africa, Komen Founder and CEO Ambassador Nancy G. Brinker visited clinics run by the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief, PEPFAR, and asked herself “Why not add cancer screening to these existing programs for AIDS and HIV?” The question becomes reality today when Susan G. Komen for the Cure, the George W. Bush Institute, UNAIDS, the U.S. State Department and corporate partners announce Pink Ribbon Red Ribbon, which adds breast and cervical screening and treatment to existing programs in sub-Saharan Africa and Latin America. Former First Lady Laura Bush and Ambassador Brinker appeared with Robin Roberts on Good Morning America today to discuss the need and the hopes for this unprecedented partnership, aimed at reducing deaths from cervical cancer by 25%, greatly expanding breast cancer screening and support services, and introducing screening and treatment models that can be used worldwide. See the Good Morning America interview below and read the press release here.