A Heartfelt Appeal to Support Breast Cancer Prevention

 

Three generations of women in my family have had breast cancer diagnoses, without a clear genetic link.

My mother was diagnosed in her 60s and died a few years later after a recurrence that spread to other areas. In 2007, shockingly, my 23-year-old niece, Julia, was stricken with invasive Stage III breast cancer – which she survived after a lengthy, grueling treatment. Two years later, at the age of 46, I was diagnosed with early-stage breast cancer. Like my young niece, I am healthy now.

This disease changed everything for me and my family. But it also inspired me to act.

In the spring of 2010, I saw an article about Against the Tide – Massachusetts Breast Cancer Coalition’s (MBCC) annual multisport event — in my local newspaper. The article explained MBCC’s mission to prevent breast cancer by understanding its environmental causes. This mission struck a chord with me, due to my family’s history of non-genetically induced breast cancer. In fact, while a woman’s lifetime risk of being diagnosed with breast cancer in the U.S. is approximately 1 in 8, only 5% to 10% are genetically linked. The rest of us are still seeking answers about the causes of this devastating disease.

MBCC has given me hope that prevention is possible. In 2010, I ran my first 5-kilometer race at Against the Tide in Hopkinton, MA, and have proudly run it every year for the past nine years! I am also proud to support MBCC financially every year. I know that every dollar of my gift helps this dedicated organization create and share free educational programs to thousands of adults and youth; advocate for crucial scientific research of the environmental causes of breast cancer; and, engage communities in the fight for environmental policy changes in our state.

Please join me in providing critical support in 2018. Your donation will strengthen MBCC as it leads the fight for prevention. With your support, there is real hope that one day breast cancer will be a thing of the past — for younger women like my niece, Julia, older women like my mother, middle-aged women like me, and people of all ages.

Please be as generous as you can. Visit www.mbcc.org and choose the DONATE ONLINE TO MBCC selection at the top of the page right now, while you are thinking of it, and make a gift that matters.

Thanks so much for your help.

Paula Kirk

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