Northern Ireland news

Women being urged to become `Breast Friends' in aid of Action Cancer

Breast cancer ambassadors - (l-r) Suzi Waterworth, Louise Dempsey, Elaine Wolstenholme, Ashley Hurst, Clair Waterson and Mireille McNutt
Marie Louise McConville

ACTION Cancer is asking the women of Northern Ireland to get together and become `Breast Friends' to help save lives by raising funds for its breast screening service.

Each year the charity screens 10,000 women and for every 1,000 women screened, five or six women will have their cancers detected.

Action Cancer receives no government funding and relies solely on support from the public to fund the life saving service.

Every time the charity screens a woman it costs £80 but is provided free of charge to the user.

Leigh Osborne, Action Cancer Community Fundraising Manger, said: "We are calling on ladies to gather the girls together and do something great for Action Cancer."

"Women very often attend screening along with a friend, family member or colleague and so who better to help spread the word about the service as well as raise funds than groups of `Breast Friends'," she said.

Ms Osborne said each fundraiser was being asked to raise £160 to cover the cost of breast screenings for two.

She said the charity was aiming to raise £10,000 to pay for 125 screenings.

"The organiser can decide for themselves how they raise the funds, anything from a coffee morning, sponsored walk, to a beauty night etc," she said.

"Each participant will receive a fundraising pack full of ideas and fundraising materials to help organise the event."

Susan Keatings, who first attended Action Cancer for screening at the age of 41, did so alongside her best friend, who had been before. It was after her third visit for screening that her cancer was detected.

"Action Cancer saved my life, I have no doubt about that, they detected my cancer at an early and treatable stage," she said.

"Don't underestimate the difference friends can make to someone else's life, get the girls together and raise funds for this great local charity."

For further information or to obtain a pack, contact Leigh Osborne on 028 9080 3347 or e-mail events@actioncancer.org.

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