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What is Worldwide Breast Cancer?
Worldwide Breast Cancer is an online resource that makes it easy to understand the basics of breast cancer. So much of what needs to be shown is under a blanket of taboo and censorship which can be lifted. The subject of cancer doesn’t have to be spoken in grave tones, but can be elevated with humor. This is how Worldwide Breast Cancer came to be. By using a friendly metaphor to open the discussion, the opportunities to communicate go beyond language, education and culture and truly have the potential to connect globally.
Perhaps you have caught the same spirit of wanting to do something with your talents to help the cause. If so, I would love to hear from you. Worldwide Breast Cancer is building a network of volunteer translators, breast cancer experts from a variety of countries, programmers and citizens like you. When we are together, breast cancer doesn’t stand a chance.
I am the grand-daughter of two women who died from breast cancer. When my second grandmother died in 2001, I had no idea what breast cancer should mean for me. So I decided to travel to a well-known cancer library a few hours away and ask them.
What happened next changed my life.
At the cancer library, I was met by friendly people, but no one knew what to tell a 21 year-old woman. They gave me pamphlets aimed at older women, showed me a few websites and gave me options to check out books from their library. After several hours of searching I left more confused than when I entered. My question was simple, yet there didn’t seem to be a simple answer to “What should I be doing now about breast cancer?”
Not one pamphlet or website told me all the answers. I had to look in several places before I could see the whole picture and sort out the good information from the bad. And, I have to admit the designer part of me was not excited about the pamphlets I saw. It was hard for me to personally identify with the images. Women from every walk of life posing together smiling about breast cancer, line drawings of breast anatomy, hands on breasts, didn’t explain what I needed to know. So, I decided to make my own educational materials.
It started with a series of posters and a small website for my Masters of Fine Art project. I showed my work to a leading breast cancer oncologist and she loved it. I thought perhaps I was on to something after all and I should pursue it more. But teaching at university and being a creative director took over and Worldwide Breast Cancer (Then known as “Lemonland.org”) was pushed into the background for a couple years.
Then I did something drastic. I left my job and moved to England to work on Worldwide Breast Cancer full-time as a doctoral design student. For five years I researched how to make breast cancer education better, how to use images to their full potential, how to connect people online and improve information exchange, and how the message can become global to reach everyone regardless of language or education and now I’m a “Doctor of Communication Design.” But this is just the start.
It’s my goal to someday see that Worldwide Breast Cancer becomes something that helps people through the whole journey, whether it be screening or treatment, or how to lend support to those effected.
There is so much that still needs to be done. If you would like to join The Mayor in the crusade and lend your skills or donate funds, head on over to the contact page. I’d love to hear from you!