Fashion for a Cause: Rock’n the Runway Raises Cancer Awareness

RnRRaising cancer awareness, celebrating survivors, and remembering those who’ve been lost to the disease are the fashionable goals of an event taking place this Saturday, October 11, in Grandville.

Cancer survivors will have the chance to feel beautiful and empowered by strutting their stuff on the catwalk. They’ll be modeling the latest fall fashions at Rock’n the Runway 2014, which takes place from 6-10 p.m. at the William C. Abney Performing Arts Center, 3075 30th St. SW. Rock’n the Runway is sponsored by Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, along with other community organizations.

“The survivors are pampered,” said Shannon Hardy, who’s handling ticket sales for the event. “They’re loved on and supported. It’s just an amazing thing for them.”

The upbeat and glamorous event is organized by non-profit organization Girl Get Your Fight Back, which aims to “empower and strengthen the confidence of women – mind, body, and soul” and to “increase health education and resource awareness among African American and Latino women.”

“It’s (cancer) not as recognized within the African American community and the Latino community,” Hardy said.

In fact, studies show that African-American women are more likely to die of breast cancer than any other group. Organizers say last year’s event prompted over ten percent of attendees to get mammograms and more information about their breast cancer risk. Proceeds from last year’s event also supplied 40 backpacks filled with school supplies to children of women fighting breast cancer.

This year’s focus has expanded to not only raise awareness for breast cancer, but to spread the word about prostate and colon cancer as well. A special father/daughter segment of the show is planned to emphasize prostate cancer awareness. Hardy said the clothing and the atmosphere will make spectators feel like they’re seeing big-city fashion.

“It’s awesome. It’s over-the-top awesome,” she said. “It’s like Milan, it’s like New York. It’s fashion, it’s glitz, it’s glamour.”

Tickets for Rock’n the Runway are $20, with proceeds going toward ongoing health education efforts. Be sure to dress to impress! A pink carpet with photos starts at 6 p.m., followed by the fashion show at 7 p.m. A light dessert social and music will follow the conclusion of the fashion show.

Photo credit: Amelia Beamish

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