Grass Roots Profile: The Breast Cancer Charities of America
The Breast Cancer Charities of America (BCCA) came into being in order to eliminate breast cancer as a life-threatening illness. Their focus is bringing together organizations that represent a wide variety of health and social service disciplines sharing a commitment to establishing innovative and effective approaches to research, education, advocacy and support. BCCA prides itself in being the only non-profit bringing the ‘integrated cancer care’ message to the women of America.
By combining the knowledge base and disciplines of oncology, nursing, psychology, sociology, nutrition, exercise physiology, spirituality and more, they believe it will be possible to discover better ways to prevent, treat and survive breast cancer. This is what they call integrated cancer care.
BCCA’s philosophy of integrated cancer care brings the “whole person” (body, mind and spirit) into the cancer prevention, treatment and recovery effort. Traditional cancer care stops with surgery and chemotherapy. Integrated cancer care adds to orthodox care the important elements of nutrition, exercise, mind/body, social support and even a search for greater meaning. BCCA firmly believes that when the whole person gets well, the body will often follow.
This integrated cancer care approach is used in addition to, not in place of, orthodox medicine. The BCCA has discovered that many of the cutting- edge scientific studies indicate that techniques incorporating diet, exercise, and social support can be as powerful as drugs and surgery. BCCA exists to deliver this message to women with breast cancer and to educate healthcare providers with this news. The hoped-for result? The ability to help change medicine, thereby potentially saving lives.
Donations are used to conduct research on the link between breast cancer and nutrition. They are also used to educate the public and health care professionals on integrated cancer care. Additionally, funds are dedicated to:
- The Help Now Fund, which provides emergency financial assistance to help people in active treatment with their rent and utilities
- The University Educational Program, which promotes the prevention message to college campuses and young women as they make healthy lifestyle choices
- Feeling Beautiful Again, a program service designed by a breast cancer survivor to provide a gift bag filled with educational and beauty items that addresses the psychological side of breast cancer and not feeling like a woman
- Survivor Kits that go into over 450 hospitals nationwide as a tool for step-by-step directions on the breast cancer journey
- Educational Empowerment Programs, teaching women across the US the steps to prevention & survivorship of breast cancer
- Medical Missions to provide clean medical supplies to impoverished nations
BCCA’s website is filled with useful information as well as providing, among other things, a survivor’s corner, information about upcoming events, information about free resources, and tips for fighting breast cancer. They also have an active Facebook page.
You can learn more about the BCCA by visiting their website: http://www.thebreastcancercharities.org/