RICHMOND, VIRGINIA – October 10, 2012 – At Richmond’s annual fashion week in April, styles from area designers made the shows successful. At an upcoming fashion show, the clothes may be a hit again, but the models are expected to steal the spotlight – they’re all local cancer survivors walking in the American Cancer Society’s Cure By Design event on Saturday, October 27th from 6 p.m. until 10 p.m. at the John Marshall Ballroom at 101 N. 5th St. in Richmond.
The Society collaborates with area fashion, design and retail partners to host the annual event, now in its seventh year in Richmond. New York designer Alex Garfield of Peace of Cloth developed the event and helps coordinate it in various cities across the southeast. Evelyn Bagala of Evelyn’s Designs is the event’s featured local designer. Cancer survivors model fashions from Garfield and Bagala, as well as items from local retailers, to help demonstrate the progress being made in the fight against cancer and to portray a message of hope for a cure.
“Cure By Design is ALL about the survivors,” said Garfield. “I understand that fashion can be exciting, but for me, and once anyone experiences a Cure By Design event, it’s ALL about the models’ courage; and the love and tears of joy shared in the room.”
More than 40 cancer survivors, including men, women, children, grandparents, students, homemakers, retirees and athletes, will walk the runway this year. Some are longtime survivors like Viola Sizemore of Richmond, a 20-year survivor of ovarian cancer, while others have faced cancer multiple times in their life, like Sheridan Reese of Richmond who was diagnosed twice with breast cancer.
“Viola, Sheridan and all of our models reflect the spirit and hope that the Society wants to bring to those facing the disease,” said Patti Jackson, area executive director for the American Cancer Society.
The fashionable event is also an opportunity for the American Cancer Society to raise funds for a number of programs and services offered to area cancer patients and their caregivers, including transportation to treatment, physical and emotional support programs, access to dietitians, and certified oncology social workers, all available from the Society at no cost. The organization also supports nearly $5 million in ongoing cancer research at Virginia Commonwealth University and the University of Virginia.
“My first experience with cancer came when I was a student nurse and I remember the sad experiences of having to share a cancer diagnosis with loved ones. The only thing I could do was show them I cared, pray with them and hand them tissues as they wept fearfully. Since then, we have come a very long way due to the wonderful research that takes place each and every year and the experience is quite different. There is now hope,” said Debbie Johnston, president and CEO of Care Advantage, Inc., and honorary chair of this year’s Cure By Design.
Participating local retailers include Eurotrash, Fink’s Jewelers, Frances Kahn, Franco’s Fine Clothier, The French Boutique, La Grande Dame, Ledbury, Need Supply Company, Pink, Roan, Saxon Shoes, Schwarzschild Jewelers and Stella & Dot. Sponsors include All About Care, Bon Secours Richmond Health System, Care Advantage, Haley Automotive Group, HCA Virginia, Health Diagnostic Laboratory, Inc., New Market, Nurse Advantage, Owens & Minor, VCU Health System, Virginia Urology, Wells Fargo and WheelHouse. Media sponsors include Belle, Style Weekly and NBC12.
About the American Cancer Society
The American Cancer Society combines an unyielding passion with nearly a century of experience to save lives and end suffering from cancer. As a global grassroots force of more than three million volunteers, we fight for every birthday threatened by every cancer in every community. We save lives by helping people stay well by preventing cancer or detecting it early; helping people get well by being there for them during and after a cancer diagnosis; by finding cures through investment in groundbreaking discovery; and by fighting back by rallying lawmakers to pass laws to defeat cancer and by rallying communities worldwide to join the fight. As the nation’s largest non-governmental investor in cancer research, contributing more than $3.5 billion, we turn what we know about cancer into what we do. As a result, more than 11 million people in America who have had cancer and countless more who have avoided it will be celebrating birthdays this year. To learn more about us or to get help, call us any time, day or night, at 1-800-227-2345 or visit cancer.org. For cancer news in your community, visit sacancernews.org.
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