Saudi Arabia/USA/World: Raising Funds and Awareness of Cancer

I am very pleased that Saudi Arabia has become much more proactive in the War Against Cancer.  The initiative of Zahra Breast Cancer Association under the sponsorship of HRH Princess Reema bint Bander Al-Saud continues to gain momentum.  Now there is a Facebook page created to keep everyone apprised of the actions and events surrounding the plans of the ten Saudi women who are going to climb to the Mt. Everest base camp towards raising awareness of breast cancer.

Additionally Saudi Arabia is starting to go pink!  Men can now purchase shirts which show their support and awareness of the women who are battling breast cancer.  These are much needed steps in Saudi Arabia where breast cancer warriors and other types of cancer warriors have been known to fight their battles in private without necessarily having a support group or resources available to them.

Meanwhile, back in the United States, I recently participated in a program, Cure by Design, sponsored by the American Cancer Society.  In this program fashion designers and local merchants teamed up with cancer warriors to produce a red carpet fashion show to raise funds for use in the War Against Cancer.  The models were comprised of men, women, teens and children.  After all, cancer does not discriminate by sex, age, ethnicity, location or religion.

The Cure by Design was an exciting and fast-paced event.  I arrived at the Ritz Carlton hotel in downtown Charlotte at 11:30 hours to prepare for the main event which was kicked off at 19:30 hours.  During the time, we as cancer warrior models met and bonded with one another as we practiced our runway struts and enjoyed the pampering of professional hair and make-up treatments.   

By the time 19:30 hours rolled around we were all ready and excited to make our runway debuts.  In between the model walks of the runway an auctioneer presented items which had been donated to the cause towards raising funds.  Attendees relished the bidding frenzies that took place with each item presented.  At one point there was a ten minute break from the fashion show with the auctioneer advising attendees that the goal was to receive US$10,000 in donations to American Cancer Society before the ten minutes expired.  I’m pleased to say that the goal was met.

It was a long day but I came home that night pleasantly sleepy and very satisfied from having participated in such a worthy and honorable event.

If you’d like to see the photos from the event and see if you can spot American Bedu, here is the link.

In closing I’d like to add God Bless my late husband who fought a valiant battle in his own private war against cancer.

Abdullah Othman Al-Ajroush

09 June 1956 – 08 February 2010

May he rest in Peace.

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9 Responses

  1. Great photos! You look radiant! Thanks for sharing about this event.

  2. My father has prostate cancer @83 yrs. No one is certain if he will be around next year.

    How do Arab men respond to breast cancer awareness anyway? Do they even want to acknowledge…the breast even th existence of it, in a public way? I know, stupid question.

    Enjoy the fundraising efforts, Carol.

  3. @Susanne – Thanks!

    @Jean – I am sorry to hear of your Dad’s cancer. Many advances have been made and there are multiple treatment options out there. I pray that your Dad keeps a positive attitude and has a great group around to support him with his battle.

    When the breast is referred to in the context of cancer it is okay to have a public acknowledgement and discussion, such as the various awareness campaigns. The reaction of Saudi men can vary depending on their education, outlook and personality. I was fortunate to have an exceptionally supportive Saudi man with me when I went through my initial battle in Riyadh.

  4. Having done the cancer dance, I’m happy to see positive responses to cancer (in all its’ manifestations) awareness, research, etc. — :)

  5. Good job acrol, and very very brave :-) nice pictures and a great cause, hope your treatments are going the way you want, and i’m so very glad you are keeping good spirits :-)

  6. @Radhaa – When I do feel down or weak I think of Juma and all the women she helped. Her memory helps keep me strong.

  7. Dear Carol,
    What a brilliant and beautiful idea we really need such events to put the message through to he world. I am so impressed by your courage and beautiful spirit to join in modeling . God bless you and all the other participants for your beautiful and giving self. We live to serve and help other human beings this is the reason for our being in this world.”… the purpose for which mortal men have, from
    utter nothingness, stepped into the realm of
    being, is that they may work for the betterment
    of the world and live together in concord and
    harmony.” Bahaullah

  8. I love the statement “we live to serve…”

  9. Just saw this news item yesterday that “scientists have developed a rapid test that could spare 10,000 women a year from having to undergo a second operation to remove breast cancer”. This is really great news indeed!

    http://www.express.co.uk/posts/view/317079/10-000-women-saved-from-operation-for-breast-cancer

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