Erica

This is what I want you to know about breast cancer.

“You’re never too young. Whether you’re 19 or 99, keep checking yourself and take anything that seems different seriously.

You’d never know from her infectious smile that Erica has fought, and won, an enormous battle.

It began on May 8th, 2019 when she was diagnosed with Triple Positive Breast Cancer (TPBC) that would catapult her incredibly hard and invasive road to recovery into action.

She was just 39 years old when she noticed something wasn’t right in her breast. “We’re taught to look for a lump, but for me, it never presented as one.” She recalls, “It just felt…odd. When I ran my hands over the top part of my breast, there was a distinct line where it felt very different from the rest of my breast. And because it wasn’t a lump, I didn’t worry at first”. Luckily, she followed her instincts as it persisted and started to take it seriously.

She went to her doctor who agreed it was worth further investigation, and she gave Erica a requisition to get a mammogram – an unfortunately necessary step for women under 40. After her mammogram appointment, she was immediately led past a lineup of pregnant women and ushered into the small, dark room for an ultrasound where the imagery illuminated her worst fear. The following week, she had a biopsy. A week after that she was officially diagnosed.

Without any time to process what was happening to her, she started her first intense and excruciating round of chemotherapy in an effort to shrink her enormous 8.5 cm X 7.5 cm mass before surgery. “I did 4 rounds of Doxorubicin – the ‘Red Devil’” she somehow says through her bright smile. Named for its Kool-Aid red colour and fierce side-effect profile, which includes hair loss, extreme nausea and vomiting, its nickname is common for those unfortunate enough to be ‘in the know’. For Erica, she thought it was aptly named. “To the minute, 4 hours of taking it, I was sick every 10-15 minutes for 5-7 days.” she recalls. Then a week of quiet reprieve before the next dose – a feat nobody should have the honour of bragging about.

After that, she went through 12 rounds of another chemotherapy drug called Taxol, for a total of 5 months and 16 rounds of chemotherapy. Following that, with the support of her family, church and medical team, she made one of the hardest choices any woman can make, and underwent a double mastectomy in November of 2019. “I didn’t want to get implants, I knew I wanted a flat closure, and I advocated for myself to get one.” she recalls, being unwavering in her decision.

But surgery wasn’t the end of her battle, “A month later, I started 25 rounds of radiation and  completed 7 rounds of Herceptin and 8 rounds of Kadcyla. I have been on Tamoxifen since Feb 2020 and will be on it for at least 5 years.” While her journey of chemotherapy, surgery and radiation might read as a pharmaceutical dictionary, she’s all too comfortable with the names and side-effects, a common trait in breast cancer survivors.

Once she healed physically, Erica did something to help her heal emotionally. She decided to get a tattoo over her mastectomy scars, helping her to make her new body feel more like her own. A choice to take back control. Now decorated with stunning chandelier-style artwork, she’s proud to show her body, and in doing so, her battle. “I am not shy about sharing my journey, and I love being able to help other women who are currently facing a breast cancer diagnosis by lending my ear and sharing my experience. My hand is open for anyone who wants to take it.”

It’s stories like Erica’s that make donating to breast cancer research so important. Without it, strides like mammography, cancer-fighting drugs and techniques wouldn’t exist. Research is getting us closer to easier, earlier detection, advancements in personalized treatments and care, ultimately saving lives, like Erica’s, across the country and globe. Your donation can help there be no more stories like Erica’s, so please, donate generously if you can.

Donate Today

When you support Breast Cancer Canada, you are helping to improve and save lives through better treatments and early detection of breast cancer.

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1 in 8 Canadian women
will be diagnosed with breast cancer.

Get Involved

The more money we raise, the sooner we can end breast cancer. Join us on our mission to end breast cancer.

How to

Support an Event

Make a contribution to a fundraiser being held in support of Breast Cancer Canada. You can search for the organization or person you wish to support; or click on the event name to make a general donation to the Raise More initiative of your choice.

How to

Sponsor

Thinking about becoming a corporate partner of Breast Cancer Canada? Amazing. work with all types of organizations. We’ll help you deliver results which are measurable. National or local.

A partnership with Breast Cancer Canada is a win-win. It improves employee engagement, boosts morale, fosters a tighter culture. It raises your organization’s profile and demonstrates your support for breast cancer research. To customers. To employees. To suppliers. Most of all – it makes a positive impact for those affected directly by breast cancer.

We’ll raise money for life-saving breast cancer research, together.

Let’s talk about building your program!

Contact Charlene Politano today to get started.
Email: [email protected]
Phone: 1-800-567-8767 or 416-352-8567

To make an online corporate donation, please click here.

If you would like to explore other ways to give, we invite you to learn more.

How to

Fundraise

Join the Raise More Challenge

The more money we raise, the sooner we can end breast cancer. The more time researchers have in the lab. The more technology they can use. The more support we can get. Advancements in early detection and personalized treatment are in reach, and with your help to raise funds, we can find a cure sooner.

There are many ways to fundraise – whether you want to create a competition or tournament, fundraise with your team, challenge your colleagues, host a pink party, have a bake sale or cook-off, the idea is to raise more for breast cancer research.

Breast Cancer Canada will empower you with all the tools you need for a successful fundraiser, and if you need more information, contact Dawn Hamilton at: [email protected]  

I am a

Corporate Donor

Support life-saving breast cancer research. A corporate donation is a simple and efficient way to demonstrate your corporate support.

To make a one-time or reoccurring corporate donation online, please click here.

If you would like to explore other ways to give, we invite you to learn more here.

Learn more about

Thinking about becoming a corporate partner of Breast Cancer Canada? Amazing. work with all types of organizations. We’ll help you deliver results which are measurable. National or local.

 

A partnership with Breast Cancer Canada is a win-win. It improves employee engagement, boosts morale, fosters a tighter culture. It raises your organization’s profile and demonstrates your support for breast cancer research. To customers. To employees. To suppliers. Most of all – it makes a positive impact for those affected directly by breast cancer.

 

We’ll raise money for life-saving breast cancer research, together.

 

Let’s talk about building your program!

 

Contact Charlene Politano today to get started.
Email: [email protected]
Phone: 1-800-567-8767 or 416-352-8567

 

To make an online corporate donation, please click here.

 

If you would like to explore other ways to give, we invite you to learn more.

I am a

Legacy Donor

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Learn more about

Leave a legacy. Plan for a future gift.

  • Leave a gift in your will
  • Donating a life insurance policy
  • Donate a TFSA, RRSP, or RRIF

 

Support Breast Cancer Canada with a future gift to create a better future for breast cancer patients. Your gift helps to save lives through early detection and improve outcomes with better treatments.

 

or more information, please contact Natalina Hamilton: [email protected]

 

LEAVE A GIFT IN YOUR WILL

This is often called a bequest. It’s the simplest way to make a legacy gift. A gift in your will has no effect on your current income and your estate receives a charitable donation tax receipt. Here’s a sample of simple bequest wording : “To pay the sum of $_________ OR _______% of the residue of my estate to Breast Cancer Canada.”

 


DONATING A LIFE INSURANCE POLICY

Life insurance is a way to provide financial security for your family. If the needs of your family are already taken care of, a life insurance policy is a smart way to donate to charity including tax savings for your estate. Speak to your financial advisors for your personalized advice and learn how a gift of life insurance can work for you. Here’s the top-line on ways of leaving gifts of life insurance:

 


Bequeath your policy to Breast Cancer Canada for the future:

  • Name Breast Cancer Canada as the beneficiary of your policy. BCC will receive your insurance proceeds tax-free. Your estate will receive a donation receipt.

 


Transfer ownership of a paid-up policy to Breast Cancer Canada now:

  • Want to gift us your existing, paid-up policy right now? Make Breast Cancer Canada the beneficiary and owner of your policy. You will receive a donation receipt for the fair market value of the policy. BCC may redeem the policy now, or hold it and receive the face value in the future – however your gift can be put to best use.

 


Transfer ownership of a policy on which premiums are still owing to BCC now:

  • Premiums still owing? You can still opt to transfer your policy ownership to BCC. You’ll receive a donation receipt for the policy’s fair market value. Want to make it an ongoing gift? Transfer the ownership to BCC, and still continue to pay the premiums owing. You’ll receive donation receipts for those payments too.

 


DONATE A TFSA, RRSP, RRIF

Register a significant difference in the lives of those affected by breast cancer. Donate the proceeds of a registered account: Tax-free savings account (TFSA); Registered retirement savings plan (RRSP); Registered retirement income fund (RRIF). It’s a smart way to make a major contribution. Without reducing your current assets. Without subjecting the funds to probate fees. While reducing taxes on your estate through a donation receipt.

 

Making a gift like this is easy. Designate Breast Cancer Canada as the beneficiary of your registered account.  You benefit from the full use of your account(s) during your lifetime. We receive any remaining funds after your passing.

For more information, contact Natalina Hamilton: [email protected]

I am a

Individual Donor

When you support Breast Cancer Canada, you are helping to improve and save lives through better treatments and early detection of breast cancer.

Learn more about

Donating securities is becoming more popular, and supports Breast Cancer Canada just like cash donations. Gifts of publicly traded securities (stocks, bonds, mutual funds) are an easy, tax-effective way to make a contribution towards life-saving research that helps with early detection, better treatments, and ultimately  Securities can be of any size and given immediately, or you can bequeath them to Breast Cancer Canada in your will. Just like a cash donation, you’ll get a donation tax credit for your gift of securities.

Today, most securities are held electronically and are easily transferred from your brokerage account to our BCC brokerage account. Your Financial Advisor can make all the arrangements.

For more information, contact Natalina Hamilton: [email protected]

Bravery is beautiful. That’s why we encourage you to make a donation in honour of a loved one’s own experience with breast cancer. With your donation, we’ll send a letter to acknowledge the dedication to the individual or family.

 

Make a donation with an eCard:


In Memory

Honour the life and memory of someone special – with a donation to breast cancer research.


To Honour

Acknowledge a friend, loved one or colleague – by supporting breast cancer research.


Let’s get started

https://bcsc.akaraisin.com/ui/ecards/donations/start

Multiply the impact of your donation

Fact: thousands of companies will match donations made by employees.

It’s true, and it’s very generous. Want to know if your company will match your donation to BCC? Use the search tool below. It also has access to all the forms, guidelines, and instructions you need to submit a company-matchable gift donation today.

Search Tool

Support life-saving breast cancer research every month of the year.

 

When you make a monthly contribution to Breast Cancer Canada, you provide stable funding for year-round campaigning and allow us to continue to support research projects across Canada.

 

To join, simply pre-authorize a monthly deduction from your credit card.

  1. Online:  Donate Now
  2. By Phone: Sign up as a monthly donor by calling Toll Free: 1-800-567-8767
  3. By Mail


Breast Cancer Canada, National Office
415 Exmouth Street Unit # 101
Sarnia, ON N7T 8A4

You will need to provide us the credit card type, number and expiry date, and the amount you would like to give each month.

How to

Volunteer

Volunteers are Breast Cancer Canada’s most important resource, and the backbone of our organization. From helping build our PROgress research to helping breast cancer patients, to supporting events, special fundraising projects and administrative tasks, our volunteers are dedicated to making a positive, life-changing impact.

We ensure our volunteers have the best possible experience and apply the Canadian Code for Volunteer Involvement.

You can help us end breast cancer by:

  • Volunteering with one of our fundraising campaigns. Or a BCC signature event
  • Helping with local community events where you live
  • Joining our PROgress research at a local hub
  • Assisting us with virtual office tasks


Learn more about our volunteer driven Regional Hubs.

Regional Hubs are an integral part of Breast Canada Canada. We connect communities and those committed to our mission to make the goal local. Together, we can save lives through advancing breast cancer research, coast to coast.

Connect with Susan Penney, Community Engagement Officer to learn more about what is happening in your area: [email protected]