Breast Cancer Awareness Month


CdM sports, like Orchesis (top) and cheer (bottom), help bring campu wide awareness with special performances during October. Photos courtesy of: Orchesis- Kaydence Osgood, Cheer- Lynn Freedman, Breast cancer ribbon- @agdemoss80 on PicsArt, Pink lines- @dionne-stickers on PicsArt, edited using PicsArt, Top and bottom frame- @stardaysi93fenice on PicsArt, collaged together using PicsArt.

Kaydence Osgood, Journalist

Breast cancer awareness month has been every October since its burning prevalence in 1985 when breast cancer was at its peak and it was reported that around 33 out of every 100,000 women had died of breast cancer. The campaign was created in a collaboration between the American Cancer Society and the pharmaceutical division of Imperial Chemical Industries to teach women the signs of breast cancer and to remind them to do yearly check-ups with their doctors.

To commemorate the month, people all over the world wear pink and participate in charity work where the profits go to those struggling with the illness. Many organizations use their influence to spread the message of the campaign. The NFL partners with the American Cancer Society every year to give them 100% of the proceeds from pink merchandise sold during October. They also have their players, cheerleaders, and even fields decorated with something pink, usually a pink ribbon, to ensure that when people are watching the game they are also being made aware of the movement.

At CdM, the initiative is celebrated at many events during October. September 6th’s football game was pink-out. ASB sold pink shirts throughout that week for students to wear. At the game, students came decked out in pink, the cheerleaders had pink pom poms to match the pink bows in their hair, and there were special performances at half-time performed by Orchesis, cheer, and drumline. During break, between first and third period, on the day of the game, Orchesis and drumline performed in the quad. Girls volleyball and girls tennis also had pink out games, and ASB held an event at lunch where students could go to the ASB room and write letters to breast cancer survivors.

Mrs. Montez, a teacher at CdM, is a breast cancer survivor and the significance of the month to her “…is awareness for people that don’t know about this. Especially because anybody could get this cancer.” She also hopes that the month ensures that “…everybody’s aware of their own health and their own body… just to be aware of the signs so that way you don’t get sick in the future.” She, and many other people on campus, attended the annual More Than Pink Walk held at Fashion Island. Montez added “more importantly I’ve been able to talk to current survivors and people that are currently in treatment. So that way I can give them my perspective and help them. Not just during the month of October, but really any time that they need support.”

Caroline Bunting, also a Junior at CdM, said that she went to support all the pink out games and the letter drive held by ASB. She feels that the importance of the campaign is “…to bring awareness to a serious issue that is overlooked in women. It’s so important that everyone is healthy…but breast cancer is serious and more common than you would think in women. It’s just important to me to make sure that those women feel more supported in that time.”

Since 1985, the death rate has decreased to around 22 per 100,000 women. This is, in part, due to the fact that cancer is being caught earlier now that women are being educated every year about the symptoms. There has also been an increase in funding and research from all over the world dedicated to improving treatment. Whether it’s the NFL or a CdM student, every form of participation in this campaign is crucial to saving the lives of many men and women.