The quad illuminated the color pink as students, faculty, and volunteers gathered to show their support and celebrate breast cancer awareness on Oct. 15 at Cosumnes River College.
Multiple organizations were set up and ready to bring awareness to CRC students on the causes, dangers and prevention of breast cancer, as well as where and who to go to for support.
“Just go get the mammogram done and don’t be afraid,” said Connie Gee, an employee of the medical assistance program at CRC, as well as a breast cancer survivor. “We try to emphasize that if you have breasts, you need to go get it done.”
A volunteer of The American Cancer Society and breast cancer survivor, Beverly Saldivar, mentioned all of the services the organization provides to young men and women, including 24-hour availability by phone, free wigs, free transportation and up-to-date cancer research.
“Everything we do is free, and if we can’t do it, we provide a direction for people,” Saldivar said. “We are the largest funder for cancer research and we are non-profit.”
Saldivar also said that the organization advocates for other breast cancer organizations who have lost the funding for their research and have to be shutdown.
“It’s very hard,” Saldivar said. “How do you just walk away from research that you know can save somebody’s life?”
Carrie’s Touch, an organization that mainly supports African-Americans battling breast cancer, was also present.
“The focus is African-American women, but everybody is welcome,” said volunteer and survivor Stephanie Morris. “We are an outreach to communities with high-diversity, low income and no access to health care.”
Camico McKnight, a 38-year-old English major, is a volunteer for Carrie’s Touch, as well as a breast cancer survivor.
“Even though African-Americans get breast cancer less often, we are the ones who die the most often from it,” McKnight said. “My goal is to bridge that gap in African-Americans.”
Queenablessings Ndakor, a 19-year-old nursing major and volunteer, set up a cupcake booth to raise money to go towards Carrie’s Touch. Students were able to buy one big cupcake for $1 or two little ones for the same price.
Gee said that women need to check their family history for cancer because 90 percent of the time, they don’t know or are not sure.
“It puts a heavy burden on you and you start wondering if you’re not going to be attractive to your spouse anymore,” Gee said. “I’m emotionally screwed up.”
Despite the battles that come with breast cancer, all of the volunteers said they were there to support and educate not only women, but men as well.
“We might have cancer, but the cancer doesn’t have us,” Gee said.