In celebration of Pink October, Cebuanos gathered to run for the cause of breast cancer awareness last Oct. 15 at the Ayala Terraces Cebu. It was a successful event that drew serious running enthusiasts, health buffs, doctors and those who simply wanted to join the fun for the 11th Pink October Run.

The National Breast Cancer Awareness Month was founded in the United States in 1985. It started as a collaboration between the American Cancer Society and a major pharmaceutical company producing anti-breast cancer drugs. It aimed to encourage women to do a mammography as part of early screening. In 1993, Evelyn Lauder of the Estee Lauder Companies founded the Breast Cancer Research Foundation and started the use of the pink ribbon as its symbol.

To support the cause, several activities were held last month. One of these is a running event that has been organized annually for the past 11 years by the Philippine College of Surgeons Cebu Central Visayas Chapter and the Philippine Society of General Surgeons Cebu Chapter. Dubbed as the 11th Edition Pink Run, the event was co-presented by the Ayala Center Cebu, Cebu Business Park, Rotary Cebu Fuente and Cebu Gloria Maris Districts.

“When we started this running event, we thought that it will be good for only two years. We were surprised that we have reached 11 years.” said Dr. Peter Mancao, head organizer of the event. He said the main objective of the run was to raise awareness on the importance of screening procedures like mammography for early detection. Screening procedures like this cannot be over emphasized, he said, because according to the Philippine Obstetrical and Gynecological Society, the Philippines topped 197 countries with the most number of cases of breast cancer last year.

The running event ended successfully with a huge turnout of runners, including running enthusiasts, doctors, students, the 2017 Bb. Cebu Candidates, and people who wanted to support the cause and those who simply wanted to have fun. They came in their pink and black race shirts with the iconic pink ribbon, participating in the 12-kilometer, 6k and 3k race.

To cap the event, special edition Pink Run Medals were given to all finishers, after which all participants helped themselves to food, drinks and “zumba all you can.” Proceeds from the event will support ICanServe Foundation’s efforts for early breast cancer detection. (Marielle Samson)