Komen Kansas City Race for the Cure Tops $1 million in Revenue

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Registrations, Sponsorships, Fundraising & New Venue help Affiliate Succeed

KANSAS CITY, MO – The 2015 Susan G. Komen® Greater Kansas City Race for the Cure met and exceeded its fundraising goal generating more than $1 million to support local programs, services and breast cancer research with additional fundraising contests continuing through October 31, 2015. Nearly 15,000 participants, vendors and volunteers came together for the event held at Worlds of Fun.

“The response from the breast cancer community has been overwhelming,” said Carli Good, Executive Director of the Greater Kansas City Affiliate. “A new race venue; a new date for the event and enhanced fundraising opportunities have driven revenue to this point faster than ever before.” Good added that she is hopeful the fundraising trends will continue through October’s Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Race participants who fundraise are eligible for incentives based on their totals as of the end of October.

Late last year leaders of Komen Kansas City announced plans to move the annual event to Worlds of Fun and the date it was held in response to challenges with holding Kansas City’s largest nonprofit 5K / 1 Mile event downtown.

“We love Union Station and all that comes with hosting event of this size in downtown Kansas City,” said David Armstrong, Special Events Director for Komen KC. “We hated leaving downtown but moving the event to Worlds of Fun helped generate more than $260,000 in added fundraising opportunities. Ultimately, more funds raised means more members of our community helped when they need it most.” Good, Armstrong and their Race Leadership Team are still evaluating the 2015 event and what makes sense for future Races in Kansas City.

Earlier this year, Komen KC announced more than $1 million would be committed to support their mission including: $375,000 for mission support (grant oversight; referrals, advocacy and outreach); $273,000 to underwrite screening services; $193,000 to support scientific research; $82,000 to assist with diagnosis and treatment; $78,000 in support for breast health education. These investments bring Komen Kansas City’s 22-year totals to more than $19 million aimed at saving lives and ending breast cancer forever – The majority of these funds each year come from the annual Race for the Cure.

About Susan G. Komen®

Susan G. Komen is the world’s largest breast cancer organization, funding more breast cancer research than any other nonprofit while providing real-time help to those facing the disease. Since its founding in 1982, Komen has funded more than $889 million in research and provided $1.95 billion in funding to screening, education, treatment and psychosocial support programs serving millions of people in more than 30 countries worldwide. Komen was founded by Nancy G. Brinker, who promised her sister, Susan G. Komen, that she would end the disease that claimed Suzy’s life. Visit komen.org or call 1-877 GO KOMEN. Connect with us on social at ww5.komen.org/social.

About Susan G. Komen Greater Kansas City Affiliate

Through events like the Race for the Cure®, Rock the Ribbon & the Pink Promise Brunch the Kansas City Affiliate has invested more than $19 million in local community breast health programs in our 17-county service area and in research throughout the US with our national grants program. Up to 75% of net proceeds generated by the Affiliate stay in the Kansas City region. The remaining income (25%) goes to the Susan G. Komen Grants Program to fund research. For more information please visit KomenKansasCity.org or join the conversation on Facebook at facebook.com/KomenKansasCity, Twitter at @KomenKansasCity, Instagram @KomenKC, or our BehindTheRibbon Blog.

Change

By Guest Columnist: Amber Bourek
Communications Manager
Komen Kansas City

My mother was really bad about going to see the doctor for preventative care. While visiting her doctor for a cold that wouldn’t go away, she was told she needed to schedule a full physical because she hadn’t been to the doctor in years.  Everything came back in the “normal” ranges except for one thing –there was a spot on her mammogram. It was breast cancer.

Luckily, they caught the breast cancer early. My mother underwent a lumpectomy followed by six weeks of radiation. She was also fortunate to enroll in a Susan G. Komen funded clinical trial that provided her with five years of prescription drugs designed to help prevent a reoccurrence. This March, my mother will be celebrating nine years as a breast cancer survivor.

(L to R) My mother Kathy, nephew Brock, myself, and sister Stephanie

(L to R) My mother Kathy, nephew Brock, myself, and sister Stephanie

Before I came to work at Komen, I thought I was doomed to get breast cancer because of my mother’s diagnosis. I was relieved to learn that an immediate family history of breast cancer only increases a person’s risk by about 13 percent. I also learned there were things I could do to help reduce my risk.

Back in the day, women were taught to focus on doing monthly self-breast exams to feel for lumps. Thanks in part to Komen research dollars, we have a learned so much more about breast cancer. Komen uses the following breast self-awareness message to educate women on their risk for breast cancer and also other things they can do to be active in their breast health:

1. Know your risk

  • Know your family history
  • Talk to your doctor about your risk

2. Get screened

  • Clinical breast exams (CBE) at least every three years starting at age 20
  • Annual mammograms and CBE starting at age 40, if you are at normal risk

3. Know what is normal for you

  • See your health care provider right away if you notice any changes in your breast

4. Make healthy lifestyle choices

  • Maintain a healthy weight
  • Add exercise into your routine
  • Limit alcohol intake
  • Limit postmenopausal hormone use
  • Breastfeed, if you can

Making healthy lifestyle choices was one part of breast self-awareness that I’ve taken to heart. I’ve probably been overweight since I was 10 years old. At 29, I joined a gym and started doing yoga. Although my gym workouts were sporadic, I was faithful to my yoga workouts twice a week for six years.  When my class ended in May 2011, I pretty much stopped doing any exercise.

In February 2012, I decided to do something about “Making healthy lifestyle choices.” I never ask anybody to do anything I’m not willing to do myself. That meant I needed to do what I was encouraging our supporters to do. Plus, I remembered how much more relaxed I was when I worked out.

On February 2nd, I got up and went to the gym at 6:30AM. Bob, a YMCA employee, called me out and said, “I haven’t seen you in a while.” Thirty minutes later, I crawled off the treadmill with my heart beat racing and covered in sweat. Before I walked out the door, Bob said, “Good workout Amber. Hope to see you again soon.” Suddenly, there was accountability. He knew my name and encouraged me to come back. The routine started every morning: my alarm went off at 6:30AM and I headed to the gym. By the end of March, I walked my first 5K with a few co-workers. It felt amazing!

In September, I hurt my leg and could barely stand – let alone walk. After a visit to the doctor determined nothing serious was wrong with me, I decided I never wanted to feel that way again. I knew that I needed to change my eating habits too. I’ve never been a fan of vegetables but I suddenly found myself in the grocery store picking them out. Plus, I searched for more low-fat recipes to prepare.

It’s been a year now and I can officially say I am living a healthy lifestyle. In addition to eating better, I’m up to 40 minutes walking on the treadmill and 20 minutes of cross training (bike or weights) every week day. And I set a goal – to do a Komen 3-Day (60 miles in three days) in a couple of years.

You can do it too! I hope you will join me in living a healthy lifestyle and make the 20th Annual Susan G. Komen Kansas City Race for the Cure ® on August 11th as one of your 2013 goals.