This month you’ll be seeing pink across the country – on lapels, products and even football fields. October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Accompanied by that signature color, people are working to raise awareness of this disease. If you’d like to participate, here are ten simple ways to get you started.
Increase Awareness from Home
- Share information on social media. The Department of Health and Human Services has some Tweet suggestions here.
- Send your female friends and family who are ages 40 and over an e-card such as these from the Department of Health and Human Services to remind them to ask their doctor about mammograms.
- Write a letter to the editor of your local newspaper to share your experience with breast cancer or to comment about the importance of research, early detection, family or group support, or whatever issue matters most to you.
Raise Your Own Awareness
- Learn about the disease. Here’s a good primer on symptoms and prevention from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Or, take this quiz from the American Cancer Society.
- Learn about your personal risk. The National Cancer Institute offers this Breast Cancer Risk Assessment Tool. Talk with your doctor, too.
- Learn about participating in clinical trials, and sign up for alerts from organizations such as BreastCancerTrials.org or Army of Women, which focuses on preventing breast cancer.
Increase Awareness in Your Community
- Wear the symbolic looped pink ribbon, and then share information or literature if people ask about it.
- Educate with edible goodies. If you plan to bake treats for a party or gathering, make them pink or put a pink ribbon on them, and bring breast cancer literature to pass around. To get literature to hand out, check with your favorite breast cancer organization, or print copies of this Breast Cancer: What You Need to Know PDF from the CDC.
- Put up a poster at your office about breast cancer. The CDC has several complimentary posters you can use.
- Create or participate in a fundraiser. For ideas on creating or participating in fundraisers, visit the website fundraising pages of well-known nonprofits that raise breast cancer awareness:
- American Cancer Society
- The Breast Cancer Research Foundation
- National Breast Cancer Foundation
- Susan G. Komen
Whatever you choose to do this October concerning breast cancer, your efforts can make a difference. Many people have been touched by breast cancer, either personally or by watching loved ones confront the disease. By increasing awareness about issues such as prevention, early detection, research and support, you’ll be helping to brighten the future of many families throughout the world.