One in eight women in the U.S will be diagnosed with breast cancer in the course of her lifetime. In 2013, I (along with approximately 267,000 other women) became part of this alarming statistic. We joined a club we never wanted to belong to. A club that requires a lifetime membership and a non-stop journey. The journey to recovery.
Five years later, I’ve entered a new phase of the journey – transitioning from victim to survivor. From patient to spokesperson. And one of the most impactful stops along the way has been participating in the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure® in Minneapolis.
This behemoth brand manages the largest series of 5K runs/fitness walks in the world to raise awareness and funding to fight and cure breast cancer. Now in its 26th year in Minneapolis, the Komen Race for the Cure averages nearly 30,000 participants. As a survivor – seeing a sea of pink t-shirts thousands deep is nearly overwhelming. As a marketer – seeing the efficiency and fluency with which this fund-raising event is run is astounding.
Sure – they’ve had practice. But managing an event of this magnitude in the small space and limited amount of time they have (approximately 4 hours on race day) is mind blowing. From their promotions, to their sponsors and volunteers, to the event itself –right through to cleanup– everything is run flawlessly. And cheerfully.
As I celebrate my five-year anniversary, I not only want to participate in– but advocate for – breast cancer awareness. We all have eight important women in our life. Sisters, wives, mothers and friends. Count them up. And if you’re a woman, count yourself as number one. You want these women around for a long time. Why not tell them that? Remind them to schedule a mammogram – or get one yourself. Breast cancer awareness isn’t just one day or one race a year. Let’s keep turning the world pink until we find a cure.
The Komen Race for the Cure will be held Sunday, May 13th in Minneapolis. For more information, visit komenminnesota.org.