More on Raising Awareness for Cancer: Pink Ribbons, Inc.
This post will add to the comments made by tjwalton in a previous post regarding “Raising Awareness for Cancer.”
Supporting breast cancer through fashion? “When you buy a garment from the Narciso Rodriguez Pink Ribbon Campaign, we will donate 10 % of the sale price directly to the Cancer Foundation.”
In my undergraduate degree, I took an interesting class with Professor Dr. Samantha King, author of “Pink Ribbons, Inc.,” which I recently discovered has been turned into a film.
Pink Ribbons, Inc: Breast Cancer and the Politics of Philanthropy.
By Dr. Samantha King.
In her book, Dr. King discusses the “dark side” of breast cancer philanthropy, highlighting that many corporations use “pinkwashing” to improve their public image – while they may not be contributing very much to the cause.
Where do the millions of dollars go that are raised by the Pink Ribbon campaign?
According to Dr. King in an interview with Breast Cancer Consortium: “The short answer is we don’t know.”
The book argues that breast cancer advocacy is mostly focused on fundraising, charity events, and the sale of commercial products, while the distribution of funds lacks coordination.
Where did the pink ribbon come from?
It was originally a peach-coloured ribbon designed by Charlotte Hayley, a grassroots activist who had battled breast cancer. She refused a proposal from the editor of “Self” Magazine to work with them, since she didn’t want to make it “too commercial.” So, the colour was changed and a “pink ribbon” was marketed. To learn more about the History of the Pink Ribbon, read the blog post on Think Before You Pink.
Dr. King hopes that “more individuals and organizations begin to acknowledge that the cure-oriented, mega fundraising approach to breast cancer has failed and that a fundamental transformation in how we understand the problem of breast cancer is required.”
I urge you all to read the book, watch the film, and ask the important question as you begin your career as health communicators: how are fundraising, media, marketing and health advocacy linked? What will your role be?
Watch the trailer for the National Film Board of Canada film Pink Ribbons Inc at the following link:
Breast Cancer Action (Advocacy Group): http://bcaction.org/
Globe and Mail Article on “Pinkwashing:” http://www.theglobeandmail.com/arts/film/pinkwashing-and-the-dark-side-of-breast-cancer-philanthropy/article543081/