Avon funds outreach for breast cancer

Under Avon’s Breast Cancer Awareness Crusade, nonprofit organizations can apply for grants ranging from $5,000 to $70,000 for programs designed to get women to mammography services.

Avon’s program won’t fund the mammogram itself, but it will cover a wide variety of activities designed to help facilitate access to mammograms. Past grants have paid for a van to take a mobile mammography unit from hospital to hospital, computer software to track patients, and salaries for outreach workers, says Joanne Mazurki, program director of the New York City-based Crusade.

The Crusade favors programs that targets women where they live and socialize, says Mazurki.

"It’s not the most productive avenue to reach women through their employers," she says. "It’s less intimidating for them to be contacted through their church, social, or community groups."

Older women are covered by Medicare for mammograms every other year, Mazurki points out. "For most people, cost is not the issue," she says.

Instead, women need to be educated on why they should have mammograms and get plugged into a detection program, she argues.

For more information, contact Joanne Mazurki, Program Director, Avon’s Breast Cancer Awareness Crusade, 9 W. 57th St., New York, NY 10019. Telephone: (212) 546-6015. Fax: (212) 546-7248.