What Breast Cancer Can Look & Feel Like
Know Your Lemons
For a description of each of the symptoms, go here.
HERE to download a Breast Cancer Risk Assessment (by www.worldwidebreastcancer.org)
Brochures from the "Know Your Lemons" campaign will be available
at the upcoming 6th Annual Pink Tea being held on Sunday, October 22,
2017 at the Visalia Convention Center at 1pm. Tickets can be reserved
or purchased by calling (559) 624-2098 or by visiting
kaweahdelta.org/pinktea for more information.
How Lemons are Changing the Picture of Breast Cancer
When breast cancer patient Erin Smith Chieze wanted to share an awareness
message with friends on Facebook explaining what her breast cancer looked
like, she ran into a dilemma: breast censorship. So how did she overcome
this? She used a picture of lemons from the #KnowYourLemons campaign created
by designer Corrine Ellsworth Beaumont, founder of the charity Worldwide
On just three Facebook posts, nearly 8 million people saw the 12 signs
of breast cancer which was shared 82,000 times. The story became so popular
overnight that heavy traffic crashed the charity website.
On Sunday, 15 January, 2017, it was the fifth most read story on the BBC
news website, and Corrine was invited to talk about the campaign on BBC
Breakfast and ITV lunchtime news the following day. Media requests came
pouring in from around the globe. People were requesting information in
their own languages. It was a “class A” viral phenomenon which
is incredibly rare. Particularly for a health campaign!
With potentially 2 billion women to educate worldwide, being able to show
the signs of breast cancer in way that appeals to a diverse audience is
critical in saving lives. With lemons as a friendly stand-in for the breast,
it makes it easy to show symptoms without being censored, or requiring
people to read a lot of text. Available in 16 languages, #KnowYourLemons
is the only grassroots education campaign on a global scale that’s
been able to overcome the incredibly high barriers of low literacy, fear
and taboo associated with breast cancer. It is starting to change the
picture of breast cancer, literally.
Corrine developed the idea as part of her Masters and later Doctoral work
after her second grandmother died from breast cancer and a close friend
was diagnosed at a young age. Not being able to find a single resource
that could explain what she needed to know, she decided to create one
herself. Popularity grew, she left her job teaching design thinking at
a university in London and founded the charity using her own savings as
a single mom to get out the message.
“I’m doing this for the family and friends I’ve lost
to breast cancer, and I’m doing this for the future of my daughter
too,” Corrine said.
Despite millions of dollars spent on breast cancer awareness, the charity
found that just 49% of women understand what a cancerous lump feels like
(which is often hard and immovable like a lemon seed, although it comes
in many shapes such as a thick mass or a small lump). Worryingly still,
just 15% of women understand what they need to know to find breast cancer
at early stages, according to the Breast Health Index published in Australia
last year by the McGrath Foundation.
So why are these awareness numbers still so low? The answer is in the challenges
faced when talking about cancer and breasts in public. Corrine explains,
“Breasts are often associated with sex, and cancer is associated
with death. When combined, it carries the taboos of ‘sex death’
which make it difficult to display in public without running into censorship
issues. This means fewer women know what to look for, feel for and how
to report it in time to be treated because it’s hard to reach them.
We want to change the picture of breast cancer to reach people that aren’t
being reached with current methods. Our goal is to make this image more
famous than the Mona Lisa and help women find breast cancer sooner so
we can save lives.”
Please donate to the campaign to help us reach more people around the world
with our important message. We cannot further our work without your support.
Do you know what a cancerous lump feels like?
Do you know when to get a mammogram?
Are you normal or high risk?
Knowing this helps you understand how often you need to be screened.
HERE and print the assessment to use as a conversation starter next time you
are at the doctor.