11th Annual Southern California-Area Avon Walk for Breast Cancer Raises More Than $4.4 Million

2,000 Women and Men Join Together to Participate in the 39.3-mile Walk; Nine Local Breast Cancer Organizations Receive Grants


Santa Barbara, Calif., Sept. 8, 2013 – The 11th annual Avon Walk for Breast Cancer season continued with the Avon Walk Santa Barbara this weekend, raising more than $4.4 million to advance access to care and funding breast cancer prevention and treatment research. The Avon Walk Santa Barbara attracted 2,000 participants from 42 states and Canada. Additionally, 309 breast cancer survivors and 280 men joined together to raise life-saving funds and awareness for breast cancer.

During the Closing Ceremony at Carpinteria State Beach, Erica Linnick of Venice, Calif., a breast cancer survivor, shared her story with fellow Avon Walkers, Crew, family and friends about what motivated her to walk: “It’s in my nature to defend those who are most vulnerable. When I saw the staggering costs of my breast cancer treatments, I couldn’t imagine someone without resources and insurance managing this fight alone. And then I found the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer, and I knew it was going to be my way of paying it forward to better serve the underserved. The miles we walked and the dollars we raised this weekend will help people who have no place to turn.”
 
Marc Hurlbert, executive director of the Avon Breast Cancer Crusade, announced during the Closing Ceremony a total of $2.18 million in grants to nine local organizations, ensuring the funds raised immediately benefit the community. “One thing that sets the Avon Walk apart is that participants get to see their hard work pay off right away,” said Hurlbert. “These grants represent only a portion of the funding that the Avon Foundation will distribute in Southern California and across the country this year, but we want to make sure that the impact of this Walk begins today.”

Following are the grants the Avon Foundation for Women awarded at the Avon Walk Santa Barbara Closing Ceremony:

  • The Avon Breast Cancer Center at the UCLA-Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center and its Olive View Medical Center partner, one of eight flagship Avon Breast Centers nationwide,received a grant for $750,000 to continue support of the Avon Cares For Life Program, which includes on-site patient navigation, survivorship programs and a high-risk clinic, as well as support for research clinical trials.
  • The Dr. Susan Love Research Foundation, home of the Love/Avon Army of Women, received a grant for $250,000. The grant will provide funds to continue the Foundation’s groundbreaking work, which reduces the time it takes to recruit research study volunteers and encourages researchers to study changes in healthy women before breast cancer develops to learn how to stop it.
  • Cedars Sinai Medical Center received a research grant for $300,000 to identify new breast cancer biomarkers to monitor disease progression and treatment response.
  • Beckman Research Institute of the City of Hope received a research grant for $380,000 to help evaluate BRCA mutations unique to Latino women and men.
  • Project Angel Food received a grant for $125,000, an organization that supports meal delivery and nutritional counseling services for those fighting breast cancer and their families throughout the Los Angeles County-area.

The following grants are part of the Avon Safety Net Hospital Program, which funds projects that help ensure access to quality breast cancer care, screening and treatment, regardless of a person’s insurance status or ability to pay. The following are the Southern California-area Safety Net grants awarded:

  • Breast Cancer Resource Center of Santa Barbara received a $25,000 grant.
  • Cancer Center of Santa Barbara received a $100,000 grant.
  • The Council of Community Clinics, serving people in San Diego, Imperial, and Riverside Counties, received a $125,000 grant.
  • Northridge Hospital Foundation received a $125,000 grant.

An additional nine community organizations in the Southern California-area will receive Avon Foundation support in 2013 through the Avon Breast Health Outreach Program, which funds organizations that work to ensure women in at-risk populations are educated about and have access to regular breast cancer screenings, including:

  • Asian Pacific Health Care Venture
  • Between Women
  • Nhan Hoa Comprehensive Health Care Clinic
  • Orange County Korean American Health Information and Education Center
  • Quinn Community Outreach
  • St. Vincent Medical Center
  • Vista Community Clinic
  • YWCA of North Orange County
  • YWCA of San Pedro

About the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer Santa Barbara
The Avon Walk for Breast Cancer Santa Barbara, the fifth of eight 2013 Avon Walks, began on Saturday, Sept. 8, with an inspirational opening ceremony at the Chase Palm Park Soccer Field. Walkers began their journey of up to 26.2 miles on Saturday through the greater Santa Barbara-area, supported by an all-volunteer crew and cheered on by family, friends and supporters along the route. Participants spent the night at the Walk’s “Wellness Village“ at the Santa Barbara Polo & Racquet Club, featuring pink two-person tents, hot showers, hot meals, entertainment, volunteer medical services, as well as leisure activities such as yoga and a spa zone with mini back and foot massages.

On Sunday, Sept. 8, after completing the Avon Walk’s final 13.1 miles – for a total of up to 39.3 miles over the course of weekend – participants joined family and friends to celebrate their achievement at a closing ceremony at Carpinteria State Beach. At the ceremony, the Avon Foundation awarded new grants to Southern California breast cancer organizations to ensure the funds raised immediately benefit the community.

Registration is open for women and men to take part in the remaining 2013 Avon Walks in the following cities: San Francisco (September 28-29), New York City (October 19-20), and Charlotte (October 26-27). For more information on the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer or to donate, visit www.avonwalk.org or call 888-541-WALK. To learn more about the Avon Foundation for Women visit www.avonfoundation.org.

The Avon Walk for Breast Cancer thanks National Sponsors: Reebok, OtterBox and ORION Trading, Local Sponsors: Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, U-Haul, American Medical Response and Am Pm Rentals, and Medical Sponsor: John Wayne Cancer Institute.

REMEMBER, EARLY DETECTION HELPS SAVE LIVES. Get a mammogram. Know your breasts and report any changes to your doctor. Talk to your doctor about your risk. And encourage women around you to do the same. Don't forget, men can get breast cancer, too.
For breast cancer information and resources, visit avonfoundation.org.