Why We Need #GivingTuesdayNOW
Every morning I wake up in this pandemic and it’s still a little surreal.
Its presence is in the little things, like looking for a place to hang up my mask when I get home from a walk. And in more serious ways, like when I open messages from women grappling with a breast cancer diagnosis while worried about how COVID will impact their treatments, appointments and surgeries.
And now we’re on the heels of an unexpectedly early Giving Tuesday campaign. That’s right, Giving Tuesday would normally be seven months away. But there is no normal in this situation and the current pandemic means that there is a greater need in communities now than ever before.
#GivingTuesdayNOW is a day dedicated to unifying our global community through giving and kindness. And it couldn’t have come sooner. We just did a survey with the young women in our community asking how COVID was impacting their breast cancer experience. The results were clear – they need our support. 69 percent said they were in active treatment, putting them in the high-risk group for COVID-19. So, it’s no wonder that majority of women (70 percent!) said their anxiety levels have significantly increased. Worries about treatment delays, disease progression or recurrence, and their safety while going to a hospital during this were all sources of anxiety.
With your support we’ve already been able to do so much. Since this crisis hit, you’ve inspired thousands of friends, family members and neighbours to take physical distancing seriously by urging them to #StayHomeForCancer. You helped Rethink launch COVID specific support that includes:
- Hosting weekly peer support video chats so women diagnosed with breast cancer can still find connection
- Nearly combined 200 hours of psychosocial support through virtual support groups
- A series of expert talks giving women access to healthcare professionals at a time when confusing information and misinformation abounds
- COVID-related stories, articles and resources that have been viewed more than 13,000 times
We can’t stop here because the need keeps growing.
That’s why we need #GivingTuesdayNOW. To continue to be there for the most vulnerable in our community. To let young women diagnosed with breast cancer that they aren’t forgotten in this crisis. That there is a place for them to be seen, heard and understood. That the big feelings that emerge from their cancer experience don’t need to take a back seat. That there is a safe place for them to turn to, even though everything is so uncertain right now.
To do that we need your help. You have the power to make a big impact. It might not feel that way, especially if you’ve have been hit financially by COVID-19. Please know that even a $5 donation or any action you can manage will make a big difference. I hope you’ll join us on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter tomorrow to #5itForward – challenging others to do small good deeds so that we can make a big difference together. Let’s show the world what happens when a community rallies to support its most vulnerable members. – MJ Decoteau