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Breast cancer organization expands into Southwest Virginia, filling gaps left by Komen

Working to fight breast cancer, provide support for those going through it

Risk of Breast Cancer
Risk of Breast Cancer

ROANOKE, Va. – A new organization is working to fight breast cancer in our region and provide support for those going through it.

The Virginia Breast Cancer Foundation is based in Richmond but now has a new office in Roanoke to better serve this region. 100% of the money raised stays in the state of Virginia.

This fills the gap after the Virginia Blue Ridge Chapter of Susan G. Komen closed in December.

“The Virginia Breast Cancer Foundation in the coming months is going to be expanding their direct services, providing screenings and treatment assistance for underinsured and uninsured Virginians,” said Catherine Warren, VA Breast Cancer Foundation Senior Director of SWVA. “There were previously other organizations filling that need. With the exit of those organizations, the VBCF really saw the need in this part of the state and we opened a Roanoke-based office and are really going to be working to serve all of Virginians, especially Southwest Virginians from the Roanoke office.

Warren says they are a statewide, state-based organization with a focus on education and advocacy. She says VBCF will provide mammograms for women who cannot afford them, so every person in the state has access to care and to know if they have breast cancer so they can get the treatment they need.

The VBCF is still working out details on what services will look like and expects to release more information in the coming months.

Warren says you can expect two events this fall:

  • October 12: Power of Pink Luncheon
  • October 23: Pink 13.1-mile race that you can walk, bike or run

As we reported, in December, the local Komen chapter announced it was disaffiliating from the national organization, closing permanently. This came following headquarters’ decision to restructure from top to bottom. The local chapter left half a million dollars to other local organizations fighting breast cancer.

The Virginia Breast Cancer Foundation (VBCF) was founded in 1991 by five women – who met in a support group. They were angered by the lack of progress in breast cancer treatment and inspired by a growing network of grassroots advocates across the country. VBCF, established as a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization in October 1992, is headquartered in Richmond, VA.

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