Pink Pyramids of Giza Send Global Message of Breast Cancer Awareness

Published October 25th, 2009 - 02:28 GMT
Susan G. Komen for the Cure® is expanding its global breast cancer mission to Egypt this October, working with Egyptian government agencies and nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) to break the silence and stigma around breast cancer. The world’s leading breast cancer advocacy organization today announced a slate of grants to Egyptian NGOs to support women’s health initiatives including vital breast cancer education, treatment and rehabilitation programs. On the eve of the historic Egypt Race for the Cure® at the Pyramids of Giza, and thanks to the support of GE Healthcare, Egyptian and United States collaborating organizations lit the Pyramids pink and sent a message of breast cancer awareness throughout the world.
Under the patronage of H.E. Mrs. Suzanne Mubarak, First Lady of Egypt and President and Founder of the Suzanne Mubarak Women’s International Peace Movement (SMWIPM), Susan G. Komen for the Cure is collaborating with the Breast Cancer Foundation of Egypt (BCFE), The Suzanne Mubarak Regional Center for Women’s Health and Development (SMC), the SMWIPM and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) to showcase Egypt’s leadership in the fight against breast cancer and ignite the breast cancer movement throughout the region. This joint effort is in support of the Ministry of Health’s National Program to Combat Breast Cancer in Egypt.
“While misconceptions and cultural stigma surround breast cancer in Egypt, advocates and survivors are proving that information and knowledge are crucial to saving lives,” said Ambassador Nancy G. Brinker, Komen Founder and United Nations’ World Health Organization Goodwill Ambassador for Cancer Control. “Illuminating the Great Pyramids of Giza pink will send a clear message to the world that breast cancer knows no boundaries, and that by working together, we can make great strides against this disease,” added Ambassador Brinker.
In the midst of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Komen for the Cure will shine a light on the life-saving work of health professionals, advocates and survivors who are on the front lines of Egypt’s battle against breast cancer. This evening, Komen announced a grant to support BCFE’s mammography screening program and lymphedema awareness, prevention and treatment program. A second grant from Komen and The Links, Inc., one of the oldest and largest volunteer service organizations of African American women, will support BCFE’s breast prosthesis program. And a third grant from Komen to the Suzanne Mubarak Women’s International Peace Movement will fund a women’s health and education program.
“We are proud to be partnering with Susan G. Komen for the Cure, once again, for this important initiative in Egypt. Regardless of our culture, demographics or where we are on the globe, breast cancer impacts us all,” stated Dr. Gwendolyn Lee, National President of The Links, Inc. “Together, we are ensuring that our work in local communities and all around the world make a positive difference in the health and well being of women everywhere.”
GE Healthcare supported the historic lighting of the Pyramids of Giza. This year marks a significant milestone for the company as it commemorates the tenth anniversary of digital mammography, a breast cancer screening technology introduced by GE Healthcare in 1999. “GE Healthcare is proud to support this worthwhile country initiative in promoting breast cancer awareness and education in Egypt and across the globe,” said Richard di Benedetto, GE Healthcare’s President and CEO for the Eastern & Africa Growth Markets (EAGM) region. “Through our own research as well as partnerships with other industry innovators, GE is continuing to develop advanced technologies that could help improve breast cancer detection in the future.”
A press event this past Wednesday, Oct. 21 in Alexandria, Egypt kicked off the week’s breast cancer awareness activities including a Regional Training Seminar on Breast Cancer Support Groups, tomorrow’s landmark Egypt Race for the Cure at the Giza Pyramids and the University of Florida’s 15th Annual Multidisciplinary Symposium on Breast Disease. Ambassador Brinker is leading a Komen mission delegation trip to Egypt where 40 U.S. delegates will experience first-hand the state of breast cancer in Egypt as well as in other countries in the region. Joining the U.S. delegation are nearly 30 Egyptian and regional breast cancer survivors and advocates representing ten countries in the Middle East.
Egypt is just one of several countries Komen is focusing on based upon the country’s need, relative political and economic stability, and the willingness of its high-ranking government officials and many non-governmental officials to work together in building capacity to address its high breast cancer mortality rates.

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