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Local Campaign to Educate African American Women on Increased Risk of Breast Cancer
Date:12/10/2013

Grand Rapids, Michigan (PRWEB) December 10, 2013

Susan G. Komen West Michigan’s I’m Alive campaign kicks into high gear this month with a focus on African American health. It is estimated that over 40,000 women will be killed by breast cancer in the United States in 2013, with more than 1,300 of them residing in Michigan*. I’m Alive aims to motivate Michigan residents to take a stand against breast cancer through regular screening and self-awareness, providing a platform for survivors to share and encourage others along the way.

“African American women are more likely to be diagnosed at a later stage of breast cancer and to develop a form that spreads more quickly,” said Shannon Wilson, Grand Rapids African American Health Institute executive director. “It is imperative that African American women educate themselves on the risk and reach out to organizations such as Komen West Michigan for information and assistance.”

“When I was diagnosed at the age of 24, my first thought was how and why in the world did this happen,” said African American breast cancer survivor Ashlie Lowe of Grand Rapids.

I’m Alive aims to motivate Michigan residents of to take the offensive against breast cancer by finding it early through regular screening and self-awareness of what is normal (and not normal) for them.

In April 2013, Komen West Michigan was awarded six grants totaling $235,000 to help local organizations provide breast cancer services and programs to underserved and uninsured populations in the area. According to womenshealth.gov, African American women statistically have limited access to health care or insurance, deterring them from seeking regular preventive care like mammograms. Komen West Michigan’s I’m Alive campaign is seeking donations, small and large, to assist in local efforts and activities.

“In 2013, we were able to fund only 6 of the 12 breast health organizations that requested o
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