Ninth Annual Avon Walk for Breast Cancer Washington, D.C. Raises More Than $5 Million

More Than 2,200 Participants Walk Through Washington, D.C.; Grants Awarded to Nine Local Breast Cancer Organizations

Washington, D.C. – May 1, 2011 – The ninth annual Avon Walk for Breast Cancer season continued with the Avon Walk in Washington, D.C. this weekend, which raised more than $5 million to advance access to care and finding a cure for breast cancer. The Avon Walk Washington, D.C. – the second of nine Avon Walks this year -- attracted more than 2,200 participants from 47 states, including 215 breast cancer survivors, who joined together to raise life-saving funds and awareness for breast cancer.


During the Closing Ceremony at the Washington Monument Grounds, seven-year survivor and two-time walker, Jill Werden, 52, of Washington, D.C., spoke movingly about overcoming breast cancer and why she participates in the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer.


“I didn’t wear pink, attend support groups or get involved in this cause at all until something triggered me to sign up for the Avon Walk D.C. last year, six years after my diagnosis,” said Werden. “Being a part of the Avon Walk was a life-changing experience. This year my husband and I walked all those miles and raised all this money and awareness to help people who aren’t as lucky as I was: people who can’t afford treatments or surgery; people who have no support network to drop off trays of food and watch their kids night after night; people who need help.”


Carol Kurzig, president of the Avon Foundation for Women, announced during the Closing Ceremony a total of $3.14 million in grants to nine local organizations, ensuring the funds raised immediately benefit the community. More grants are slated to be awarded throughout the year to breast cancer programs nationwide. “The dollars you raised are going to do a lot of good right here in the D.C. area, right now,” said Kurzig. “Our beneficiaries represent organizations that offer life-saving services to patients, regardless of their ability to pay. They’re doing cutting-edge research to find better treatments, prevention strategies, and ultimately a cure. These new grants will literally help them save lives.”


Following are the Washington, D.C., grants announced at the Closing Ceremony:


-- Georgetown University received $750,000 in the form of two grants. The first grant will support Avon’s signature patient care program in the District, the Capital Breast Care Center, and the second grant will fund a research project to develop a blood test for the early detection of breast cancer. 

-- Johns Hopkins University, an Avon Comprehensive Breast Cancer Care Center of Excellence, received $750,000 to support access to care and cutting edge research at the Avon Center at Johns Hopkins.

-- National Breast Cancer Coalition Fund received $600,000 to continue Project LEAD, a program that trains breast cancer survivors and advocates to serve as advisors and advocate for research and funding programs. Through Avon support, more than 1,300 advocates have already been trained. 

-- George Washington University received $400,000 in the form of two grants. One grant will support its Mobile Mammography Campaign for Breast Health in Anacostia while the second grant will support a research project led by Dr. Patricia Berg to develop a new test to assess risk of breast cancer.

-- Food and Friends received $250,000 to support its Avon Pink Ribbon Delivery Program, which provides breast cancer patients and their families with specialized nutrition support and delivered meals.

-- Foundation for the National Institutes of Health received $150,000 to support I-Spy 2, a ground breaking study that will test new, individually targeted breast cancer therapies in patients diagnosed with localized, aggressive cancers. 

-- Meritus Healthcare received $115,000 to support a patient navigation program for underserved women from rural Washington County.

-- University of Maryland Baltimore received $75,000 to support the Baltimore City Breast Cancer Patient Navigator Program.

-- Winchester Medical Center received $50,000 to support patient navigation for underserved women and men in Virginia, West Virginia and western Maryland.


About the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer Washington, D.C.
During the Avon Walk Washington, D.C., women and men had a choice of walking a marathon (26.2 miles) or a marathon and a half (39.3 miles) over the weekend. The event kicked off Saturday, April 30, with an early morning Opening Ceremony at the Washington Monument Grounds. Following the Ceremony, walkers began their journey, traveling through the Washington, D.C. area and concluding at the Avon Walk “Wellness Village” at Meadowbrook Park in Chevy Chase, MD. The “Wellness Village” featured two-person sleeping tents, hot showers, prepared meals, entertainment, volunteer medical services and comprehensive support services, along with leisure activities such as relaxing yoga to stretch out the muscles and a spa zone with mini-back-and-foot-massages. On Sunday, May 1, walkers completed another 13.1 miles together, ending back at the Washington Monument Grounds where they were greeted by thousands of family and friends, who shared in a celebratory and moving Closing Ceremony, including the awarding of new grants.

To participate in the Avon Walk Washington, D.C., each walker raised a minimum of $1,800 in donations. The Avon Foundation for Women [a 501(c)(3) public charity] manages the funds raised, which it awards to local, regional and national breast cancer organizations to support five areas of the breast cancer cause, including awareness and education, screening and diagnosis, access to treatment, support services, and scientific research. 


Since its launch in 2003, the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer series has raised more than $380 million through the dedication of more than 142,000 participating women and men from across the country, including thousands of Avon Associates and Representatives. The Avon Walk D.C. is the second event of the 2011 season, and registration is still open for women and men to take part in the remaining 2011 Avon Walks: Boston (May 14-15), Chicago (June 4-5), Rocky Mountains, CO (June 25 – 26), San Francisco (July 9 – 10), Santa Barbara (September 17-18), New York City (October 15-16), and Charlotte, NC (October 22-23).


Donations are still being accepted for the Avon Walk Washington, D.C. To register, donate or for additional information, please visit  or call 800-541-WALK. 




The Avon Walk for Breast Cancer thanks National Sponsor: Reebok; Official Sponsors: Genentech BioOncology, Lend Us Your Ear powered by and OtterBox; Local Sponsors: Capital Party Rental, Groupon, Washington Sports Clubs, The National Press Club Ronald Reagan Building, Rental Solutions; and Medical Sponsor: Georgetown University Hospital.


Remember: early detection can help save lives.  Schedule your mammogram or clinical breast exam today.  For more breast cancer information and resources, visit (keyword breast cancer) or, where you can access free printable breast cancer informational literature.


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