The Campus Activities Board and the Associated Students of the University of La Verne joined forces to shed light onto a somber issue – breast cancer and decorated the South Quad with pink Wednesday night.
Danielle Garcia and Lauren Crumbaker collaborated to put on the event, Poppin’ pink, in hope of raising awareness and honoring those who have been affected by the disease.
“People are so quick to wear the pink ribbons, but they really don’t understand how it affects so many lives,” said Garcia, a sophomore business major and CAB’s philanthropy chairwoman.
“We wanted to raise awareness and celebrate the lives of the survivors and those with the disease,” Crumbaker, a sophomore ASULV senator at large, said.
Victims and survivors were honored through a candle light memorial in the shape of the iconic ribbon, surrounded by posters featuring facts about breast cancer. Participants signed a pink breast cancer ribbon board that will be later donated to the City of Hope, a cancer research and treatment center in Duarte.
“To me it’s a positive event, it’s awesome to see everyone participate,” Jessica Loomer, junior English major, said.
She said she came out to support those she knew who have been affected by the disease.
“It’s not about the free t-shirts or bracelets. It’s about raising awareness,” said Crumbaker.
Because breast cancer can be hereditary, those who have family members with it are at a higher risk for having cancer themselves.
Garcia explained that because her great-grandmother died of breast cancer, she frequently has to go in for exams to ensure she does not have cancer.
“If you’re a woman of any age, please go get checked,” Garcia said.
But the somber moment of the evening came with the final speeches given by Lorena Hernandez, a La Verne alumna, and her friend, Antoinette Padilla, who is now battling breast cancer.
Padilla shared her story of pain through the treatments and operations she’s gone through in hope of inspiring the younger generation to be more aware and catch it early on. She shared her view that holistic treatment worked better for her than treatments like chemotherapy, but that those treatments do not work for everyone.
“As a woman, I try to think it’ll never happen to me, but this event puts it into perspective,” Crumbaker said.
“It’s really cool to do this on campus, plus the speaker was really inspiring,” Loomer said.
Susie Camacho CAB’s multicultural chairwoman, said the event was not meant solely for people to have fun, but as a way to inform more people about the disease.
“It’s all about support,” Camacho said. “People don’t really understand the disease.”
Padilla has raised more than $200,000 for cancer research so far.
Amanda Larsh can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.