Sunday 28 September 2014

Social media logos tapped in breast cancer drive

They're tweaked to look like a hand checking a breast, to spur awareness
By Salma Khalik, The Straits Times, 27 Sep 2014

WOMEN who are savvy in social media are a key target in this year's breast cancer awareness campaign.

The Breast Cancer Foundation (BCF) will be tweaking Facebook, Twitter and Instagram logos to push out its campaign.

These logos, altered to look like a hand feeling the breast for lumps, are being shared online to promote Breast Cancer Awareness Month in October.

The BCF hopes that Singapore's sizeable and influential population of digital citizens will heed the call to skip a few minutes on social media and spend them on breast self-examination as it could save their lives.

Creative agency DDB, which is helping the BCF with its campaign for free, has also come up with several T-shirt designs supporting this year's theme: Together we are stronger.

The T-shirts go on sale for $15 each from this evening at the Pink Ribbon Walk - led by Speaker of Parliament Halimah Yacob - at Gardens by the Bay.

The money raised will go towards helping women undergo screening to detect the cancer early.

The BCF will be spending $400,000 a year, for the next five years, on subsidies for women with the Community Health Assist Scheme card to screen for breast cancer.

Other women can benefit from $25 vouchers from the Singapore Cancer Society, which will halve the cost of breast cancer screening at polyclinics and hospitals.

These vouchers can be picked up from Guardian and Metro stores any time next month.

BCF president Noor Quek said women with breast cancer need support, be it from family, friends or at the workplace, hence the slogan.

Ms Katherine Goh, 45, is an example. It was support from both her family and at work that got her through the difficult time after she discovered she had breast cancer in 2008.

The deputy director at the Civil Service College had to have her entire breast removed because the cancer had spread. She was 39.

Her job required frequent travel, but her human resource chief, Mr Spencer Heng, redesigned her job so that she could spend more time recuperating in Singapore.

Mr Heng said the college is very supportive of employees diagnosed with serious illness.

"This is so that they can concentrate on getting well while still continuing to work," he said.

For Madam Lili Khalid, 48, it was her husband's staunch support, as well as that of her company, Dell, that saw her through the devastating time of her life.

Now, looking back at the mastectomy which she underwent to remove her entire right breast, she said: "To reconstruct the breast, they needed to take fat from another part of the body. So I got a tummy tuck at the same time."

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