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National Denim Day Aims to Stem COVID-19 Ripple Effect

woman clutching chest
woman clutching chest

Doctors are bracing for a spike in breast cancer diagnoses. On May 10, help CURE Foundation raise funds for new medical imaging equipment in hospitals across Canada.

In May 1997, CURE Foundation wanted to make it easy for Canadians to raise funds in support of the fight against breast cancer. Ever since, on the Tuesday after Mother’s Day, hundreds of thousands of Canadians take part in National Denim Day by wearing jeans, CURE’s pink ribbon and making a donation to the foundation.

This year, help is urgently needed. In 2020, cancer screening was paused due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Now, doctors are bracing for an unprecedented spike in breast cancer diagnoses, as well as, patients being diagnosed at a later stage. Christina Deans, a breast cancer patient, experienced this delay firsthand. “It took 6 long months to get tests, a diagnosis and finally surgery to remove the aggressive cancer,” says Deans. As days passed by, the lump only continued to grow. “Guidelines recommend imaging for cancers within 30 days, but during the pandemic, patients like myself have experienced delays stretching for months.”

A recent study found that 12,601 fewer people were diagnosed with cancer in Ontario during the first waves of COVID-19 in 2020 than in previous years, representing a 34-per cent drop. The study shows researchers believe the cancers are out there and will be diagnosed at a more advanced stage negatively affecting a patient’s cancer experience. “All those weeks waiting to find out was just damaging. It takes a toll on your family, your mental and physical health,” says Deans. Other studies show that for every month of delay in diagnosis, the risk of dying increases by 10 percent, on average.

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CURE Foundation funds research, education, support and equipment

CURE is a national foundation that works in partnership with health professionals and other non-profit organizations to improve breast cancer outcomes. Its mission is to raise awareness about the disease and ensure no lives are lost due to a lack of funding by exploring all possible avenues in the fight against breast cancer. Since its inception in 1996, CURE has raised more than $30 million, primarily through its annual flagship fundraiser, National Denim Day. The foundation funds research; education, support and awareness initiatives; and equipment for screening, diagnosis and treatment. Its financial assistance program provides a grant of up to $2,000 to offer relief to those experiencing economic hardship resulting from a breast cancer diagnosis.

Participation in National Denim Day is simple and makes a big impact

To deal with this pandemic ripple effect, money raised from this year’s National Denim Day will fund new medical imaging equipment in hospitals across Canada.

This year’s National Denim Day will be on Tuesday, May 10. Participation is effortless: businesses, organizations and institutions, schools and all Canadians are encouraged to allow employees, members or students to wear denim in exchange for a suggested $5 donation. Anyone can create awareness and contribute vital funding in three easy steps: create a digital campaign on the CURE website, invite colleagues, family and friends to contribute and then wear denim on May 10.

This year, the CURE Foundation aims to raise $1 million through National Denim Day to help change statistics like these:

• 27,000 new cases of breast cancer diagnosed in women each year, representing 25 percent of all new cancer cases
• 230 new cases diagnosed in men each year
• Five thousand people will die of breast cancer each year, which is about 13 percent of all cancer deaths


To make a secure online donation, or start a fundraising team visit NATIONAL DENIM DAY 2022 | CURE Foundation (crowdchange.ca). Or for more information contact the CURE Foundation toll free at 1-888-592-2873.

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