Shocking Pink - supporting young women with breast cancer
Shocking Pink is a new New Zealand charity dedicated to supporting young women (aged 20-45) through their journey of breast cancer (and out the other side!) and is one of BCAC’s newest member groups.
Shocking Pink was co-founded by Kylie Richardson and Cheryle Robins, who during 2010 were both to embark on something far more unexpected, far more unplanned and far more trying than either of them could have ever imagined. It would be the year they both got the shock of their lives when they discovered their very own boobs were actually ticking time-bombs.
They would never look at themselves, the future or anything pink in the same way again. They were now members of the most exclusive group – two of the 370 young women aged 20-45 who are diagnosed with breast cancer each year in New Zealand.
It’s not just pink…it’s shocking pink!
With the majority of breast cancer resources being information-based or catering more for the needs of post-menopausal women, Shocking Pink is there to ensure all young women ‘in the pink’ have that same support that Kylie and Cheryle found in each other.
When having to undergo fertility treatment to ensure you might one day have children, waking up at night from menopausal hot flushes and trying to cope with difficult treatment and even more difficult feelings – the two founders know that without each other their journey would have been unimaginably harder.
Shocking Pink (www.shockingpink.org.nz) is not written by medical experts, trained counsellors or cancer information specialists – there’s plenty of amazing people already taking care of that. Instead, it’s written by women telling it like it really is because they’ve been there too and know just what it’s like to be looking down the barrel of your own bazookas!
Shocking Pink is about young women sharing this journey, supporting each other and knowing that, while few in number, they are definitely not alone.
About the founders
Kylie Richardson was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2010 at the age of 27. A mastectomy, 6 months of chemo and 1 month of radiation followed but with the support of family and friends she made it out the other side. Now on hormone therapy for 2 years, her ideal life plan has been altered somewhat, but she has been afforded new opportunities out of this - like co-founding Shocking Pink!
Cheryle Robins was aged just 34 in 2010 when she was diagnosed with rare and aggressive Inflammatory Breast Cancer (IBC) while breastfeeding her 1 year old son. After 16 treatments of chemotherapy, a bilateral mastectomy and 25 sessions of radiation, she’s now out the other side and having continued hormone therapy. She has also inherited the BRCA2 breast cancer gene mutation and faces further prophylactic surgery in the future. With the unconditional love and support of her boys, family and amazing friends she has been able to co-found Shocking Pink and create something positive from her situation.
To contact Shocking Pink: