The start of October is the start of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and two women from Naples are champions in raising money to help men and women fighting the disease.
Natalia Armstrong and Kathleen Christiansen, both touched by the disease in different ways, have raised $119,000 this year to support Making Strides Against Breast Cancer. The money pays for rides to chemotherapy, places for patients to stay while being treated, and a 24/7 support hotline.
Christiansen said, “In 2001 I was diagnosed as stage four breast cancer and given less than a year.”
And Armstrong added, “My grandmother died of breast cancer. That was a motivating part for me.”
The dynamic duo is turning pink into the green.
They say it isn’t as hard as you would think to convince people to give, even in trying financial times like these.
“I arrived in Florida after retirement and I said to the head pro at Treviso Bay, ‘Would you mind if I did a pink golf outing down here?'” Christiansen explained.
“‘We know that you can do this, we know that you have someone that you can thank in your life and your relationships that has gone through this experience; what do you want to do to represent them?'” Armstrong said she asks people.
From one day, six years ago, it’s now a full week of fundraising called Week of Hope.
Christiansen described the event. “We had a pink pet parade. Who does that? A stationary bike cycling thing for 4 1/2 hours, teams that jumped off and on bikes. We had a 5K…”
The money raised helps Making Strides Against Breast Cancer and provides patients with rides to chemotherapy, free places to stay near the hospital, and toward research for a cure.