This year Susan G. Komen estimates that there will be well over 200,000 new cases of invasive breast cancer. On the upside, breast cancer mortality has significantly decreased. From 1989 to 2016, the mortality rate dropped 40% in the US, and since 1989, up to 614,500 breast cancer deaths have been avoided.
While Susan G. Komen doesn’t state the exact reason for this, it could have something to do with increased mammography screenings during that time, meaning earlier detection, or a decrease in the use of menopausal hormone therapy after it was shown to increase the risk of breast cancer, or possibly both.
Regardless, knowing there has been such a decrease in mortality rate is critical because it shows how important continued research and funding for research genuinely is. And one company stepping up to the fight is Texas-based, mom favorite Kendra Scott.
We spoke with the CEO, designer and philanthropist to understand why this particular cause is so close to her heart. “My dear friend Holley Rothell Kitchen lost her life to metastatic breast cancer in January 2016,” Scott says. “[I want to] continue Holley’s legacy by [supporting] breast cancer research and awareness.” Scott has created an annual day, Holley’s Day, just for her friend as a give-back day to raise support for Inheritance of Hope, an organization that Holley held close to her heart.
Scott says she realizes she’s obviously not the only one who has had a friend or loved one lose their lives to this disease. Because of her experiences, Scott says she’s committed to taking action in this fight.
On top of fundraising, Scott has made it her company’s mission (a company made up of 98% women) to support the Breast Cancer Research Foundation in addition to Inheritance of Hope. “Breast cancer is an ugly disease that takes the lives of far too many women,” Scott says.
The company is making waves in this effort too. Since 2016, the company has invested over $793,000 for breast cancer research (wow), gifted 25,000 pieces of jewelry to women undergoing treatment and impacted 50 families who are dealing with this disease. “I believe giving back is the truest form of success, and philanthropy has always been a core pillar [for] my business,” Scott says. Talk about making an impact in these families’ lives.
Scott is also excited that the company will provide its first research grant—a $250,000 grant to Dr. Suzanne Fuqua from the Baylor College of Medicine in Houston. With the grant, Dr. Fuqua will be able to do essential work to improve treatment and prevention. “Her research is critical because it is when tumors develop a resistance to anti-cancer therapies that metastasis occurs, killing almost 100% of those affected,” Scott says. This sounds like incredible developments could come as a result.
So what can you do? Shop! Seriously, all you have to do is find some new bling as proceeds from certain purchases will go toward breast cancer research funding. Shop for you, a family member or friend, or maybe for someone fighting this disease right now. Visit your local Kendra Scott store or online to join the fight.
Images courtesy of Kendra Scott.