The Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation was founded on a promise made between two sisters – Susan Goodman Komen and Nancy Goodman Brinker. Suzy was diagnosed with breast cancer in 1978, a time when little was known about the disease and it was rarely discussed in public. Before she died at the age of 36, Suzy asked her sister to do everything possible to bring an end to breast cancer. Nancy kept her promise by establishing the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation in 1982 in Suzy’s memory.
Almost 30 years later, Nancy’s promise has evolved into Susan G. Komen for the Cure, the world’s largest network of breast cancer survivors and activists. Through various fundraising and awareness efforts, Komen has built one of the most iconic international symbols of breast cancer awareness: the pink ribbon.
While there is much ballyhoo surrounding the organization’s use of cause marketing – engaging corporate sponsors to ‘resell’ the pink ribbon in a variety of formats for their own personal gain, there is no denying the result: Komen has achieved a reach of more than 1.7 million and counting.
Social media has also played a significant role in fostering the Komen community. Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and communities, such as Care2, offer places to connect, share stories and take action. With 9 in 10 adults agreeing that digital media can fuel interest in a cause into a movement, isn’t it time to get online?