In the spirit of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Bed-Stuy-based 500 Men Making a Difference hosted their annual Breast Cancer Walk this past Sunday. Participants met at Boys and Girls High School at 8 a.m. and made their way to Central Park. The goal of 500 Men is to help fund research to find a cure for breast cancer.

According to the National Breast Cancer Awareness Month collaborating organization, approximately one in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer. Most of the women who have been diagnosed with breast cancer were unaware they had it. Women are strongly encouraged to have monthly check-ups and to self-examine. Studies have found women who are diagnosed earlier are more likely to successfully fight the disease than those who are unaware.

Throughout the month of October, Making Strides Against Breast Cancer will be hosting awareness walks all over the U.S. This year the organization honored and walked for six women, including Amsterdam News editor and nine-year breast cancer survivor, Nayaba Arinde.

Local organizations such as Arinde’s Square Circles and Survivor Nation and 500 Men believe in the importance of spreading awareness to help find the cure. “We believe in the importance in supporting organizations like American Cancer Society because it is informative to diagnosed women, current patients and survivors,” said Wayne Devonish, the founder of 500 Men Making a Difference. He created the foundation, he said, to help demolish the negative stereotypes about African-American men. The nonprofit organization recruits African-American males in the age range of 12 to 22 throughout the city. The prominent self-employed and community activist started the organization to mentor young men for entrepreneur and educational opportunities. The program also hosts a variety of community events and promotes community service. 

Along with the annual Breast Cancer Walk, they host fundraisers to raise money for their goal, including bake sales and car washes. They urge locals to support the cause and to participate in their events. One of their slogans is “The success of fundraising events depends on two things, hard work and promotion.”

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