As we embark on Breast Cancer Awareness Month, I want to take a moment to reflect on the inspiring work of the Avon Breast Cancer Crusade, which has placed Avon and the Avon Foundation for Women at the forefront of the fight against cancer. I am proud that Avon’s crusade has inspired millions of people to join our important journey of eradicating breast cancer, and moving this health epidemic into the public dialogue.
Avon’s purpose-driven mission is in a class of its own. For 130 years, this company has provided economic independence for millions of women across this country. Through the decades, hundreds of millions of dollars have been earned by women who have turned to Avon to support their families, send their kids to school, take a vacation, and pay off their homes. But we know that women cannot be truly empowered until their health and safety are guaranteed. For this reason, we take the support for women’s causes very seriously.
Earlier this year, we celebrated the milestone of $1 Billion in contributions raised for critical women’s causes – with more than $800 million of this donated to breast cancer programs in over 50 countries. We are grateful to our Avon Representatives and Customers for the important role they have played in raising funds through the sale of pink ribbon products. These funds support breast cancer research, like our recent Hispanic and Black:White disparity studies, and advancing access to quality care with a special focus on helping the medically underserved.
The AVON 39 The Walk To End Breast Cancer is a living testament to Avon’s commitment. This is the Avon Breast Cancer Crusade's two-day, 39-mile walk, which helps fund research, awareness and education while providing assistance for families currently battling breast cancer. Since its launch in 2003, the AVON 39 series has raised nearly $590 million thanks to more than 220,000 participating women and men from across the country, including many Avon Representatives and employees. Avon Walkers have collectively circled the globe more than 264 times, they’ve walked over 6.5 million miles, and more than 18,000 survivors have participated.
Every AVON 39 event is filled with individuals whose lives have been touched by breast cancer, and who have their own personal reason for wanting to take part and make a difference. I had the great privilege of walking the Avon 39 Chicago in June. In the final miles of the walk on day two, I met an incredible woman who had a mastectomy a year ago, and despite the cancer having spread to her rib, she was full of energy and determination to complete the course and beat cancer. She gave me all the inspiration I need to take on AVON 39 New York in a few weeks. I will be walking for my new friend, and for countless other women who are courageously battling breast cancer.
For Avon, a very important measure of our success is not one that can be measured by money. Our success as the company for women will also be determined by the impact we can make for women. Our commitment to ending breast cancer has become an integral part of our culture, and one that unites our Representatives, Employees and communities. Together our goal is to improve the lives of women by ensuring every woman has access to the care and services she needs. Together, we are making an incredible difference in women’s lives.