Avon Walk for Breast Cancer Returns for 11th Season in Washington, D.C. on May 4-5

Thousands from Washington, D.C. and Across the U.S. Participate in Annual Weekend Fundraising Event to Support Breast Cancer Cause


Washington, D.C., April 3, 2013 – The 2013 Avon Walk for Breast Cancer series returns for its 11th year in Washington, D.C. on May 4-5. The national Avon Walk series, now in its 11th season, brings together thousands of participants – including breast cancer survivors – who are dedicated to raising life-saving funds for the breast cancer cause. Last year’s Avon Walk for Breast Cancer Washington, D.C. drew 2,200 participants from 39 states and Washington, D.C., including 269 breast cancer survivors. Participants raised $5 million dollars to advance access to quality breast health care and to fund research into the causes of breast cancer and ultimately finding a cure.

The Avon Walks offer participants a choice of walking a marathon (26.2 miles) or a marathon-and-a-half (39.3 miles) over a weekend. Walkers raise a minimum of $1,800 to participate and the Avon Foundation for Women distributes the funds raised to local, regional and national breast cancer organizations. The Avon Foundation for Women has awarded more than $65.2 million to organizations and institutions in Maryland, Virginia and Washington, D.C. including Johns Hopkins Medical Institute, Georgetown University and George Mason University.

Whether participants are taking part in the Avon Walk for a personal reason or to help support the breast cancer cause, they all have a story to tell. Cathy Colleli of Olney, MD, is a three-year breast cancer survivor participating in her tenth Avon Walk Washington, D.C. She walks with her sister and brother-in-law, not only in celebration of her survival but also in memory of their sister who lost her battle to this deadly disease. Also participating in this year’s Walk for the fifth time is breast cancer survivor Gerie Voss of Rockville, MD. Diagnosed at the age of 26, Gerie walks in order to educate others that breast cancer is not just an "old woman's disease,” but a disease that is possible at any age.

The funds raised at the Avon Walk Washington, D.C. will enable a long-time Avon Walk beneficiary, Food & Friends, to deliver its one-millionth meal to a breast cancer client. For the past 13 years, the Avon Walk has awarded Food & Friends nearly $3.63 million in Avon Walk grants to fund its “Pink Ribbon Delivery Program.” Since 2001, the program has delivered specialized meals, groceries and nutritional counseling to 2,250 breast cancer patients in Washington, D.C., the majority of whom live in poverty. For the last decade Food & Friends Executive Director Craig Shniderman has participated in the Avon Walk, always walking one day in drag under the name Miss Ivanna Beat Breast Cancer. Shniderman will be hitting the streets of D.C. for his tenth Avon Walk on May 4-5.

About the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer Washington, D.C.
The Avon Walk for Breast Cancer Washington, D.C., the second of eight 2013 Avon Walks, begins on Saturday, May 4 with an inspirational opening ceremony at the Washington Monument Grounds. Walkers will then begin their journey of up to 26.2 miles on Saturday through the greater Washington, D.C. area, supported by an all-volunteer crew and cheered on by family, friends and supporters along the route. Participants will spend the night at the Walk’s “Wellness Village“ at Meadowbrook Park, 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, May 5 after completing the Avon Walk’s final 13.1 miles – for a total of up to 39.3 miles over the course of the weekend – participants will join family and friends to celebrate their achievement at a closing ceremony back at the Washington Monument Grounds. At the ceremony, the Avon Foundation will award new grants to Maryland, Virginia and Washington, D.C. breast cancer organizations to ensure the funds raised immediately benefit the community.

For more information on the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer, visit www.avonwalk.org or call 888-541-WALK.  To learn more about the Avon Foundation for Women visit www.avonfoundation.org.

The complete 2013 Avon Walk for Breast Cancer schedule is: Houston (April 20-21), Washington, D.C. (May 4-5), Boston (May 18-19), Chicago (June 1-2), Santa Barbara (September 7-8), San Francisco (September 28-29), New York City (October 19-20), and Charlotte (October 26-27).

About the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer Series
The Avon Walk for Breast Cancer series is a project of the Avon Foundation for Women, a 501(c)(3) public charity. Since its launch in 2003, the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer series has raised more than $470 million through the dedication of nearly 180,000 participating women and men from across the country, including hundreds of Avon Associates and Representatives. The Avon Foundation awards the funds raised to local, regional and national breast cancer organizations to support breast cancer education, screening and diagnosis, access to treatment, support services, and scientific research. The Walks take place in eight cities, covering 39.3 miles in two days, and raise significant awareness and funds to fight breast cancer. The Avon Walk for Breast Cancer Series is the largest fund-raising event for the Avon Breast Cancer Crusade. Since Avon launched the Crusade in 1992, Avon breast cancer programs in 58 countries have donated more than $780 million for research and advancing access to care. Visit www.avonwalk.org for more information.

About the Avon Foundation for Women
The Avon Foundation for Women, the world’s largest corporate-affiliated philanthropy focused on issues that matter most to women, was founded in 1955 to improve the lives of women. Through 2012, Avon global philanthropy, led by the Avon Foundation, has donated more than $910 million in more than 50 countries for causes most important to women. Today, Avon philanthropy focuses its funding on breast cancer research and access to care through the Avon Breast Cancer Crusade, and efforts to reduce domestic and gender violence through its Speak Out Against Domestic Violence program. Visit www.avonfoundation.org for more information.

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The Avon Walk for Breast Cancer thanks National Sponsors: Reebok, OtterBox and ORION Trading, Local Sponsors: Capital Party Rentals, Ronald Reagan Building, Medical Sponsor: Johns Hopkins Medicine

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.