I am writing to share with you an exciting opportunity that is at the intersection of health and wellness. In just a few months, on June 27, 2010, I will be participating in the Janus Charity Challenge at Ironman Coeur D’Allene. The Ironman is a grueling 140.6-mile journey consisting of a 2.4-mile swim, a 112-mile bike, and a 26.4-mile run, that must be completed in 17 hours for athletes to earn the title of Ironman. As stated on the event’s website, this race, “ takes passion, focus and discipline.”
This year, I have made a commitment to participate in the Janus Charity Challenge at Ironman, to support a breast cancer non-profit organization that embodies the same passion, focus and discipline that the event embodies, the Tigerlily Foundation (Tigerlily). Tigerlily was founded by a young survivor of breast cancer, Maimah Karmo, who like many younger women, had no idea that young women can and do get breast cancer. As a single mother, after being diagnosed at 32-years old, Maimah founded Tigerlily, the only nation-wide organizations providing full-lifecycle assistance to young women – before, during and after breast cancer – to include, education, financial assistance, meals, groceries, buddies, buddy bags and empowerment to young women affected by breast cancer. What differentiates Tigerlily from other breast cancer foundations is that it is solely focused on young women – 15 – 40. Tigerlily is there for these women when all the doors seem closed; Tigerlily fills the gaps that other charities often miss.
As a plastic surgeon, and an athlete, I realize the impact of breast cancer in the community and nationally. I would describe myself as an average athlete who in 2008 decided that I wanted to do a marathon and completed 6 within 13 months. I then signed up for the Ironman in Idaho before I had even completed a triathlon, with no biking or swimming experience, as I saw this as an opportunity to help others. This year, I selected Tigerlily because it is a local charity serving the local community. It has a low overhead and is almost totally volunteer-based, so that every dollar that is raised can make a significant difference.
Just this month alone, Tigerlily was able to raise funds and pay the car notes for two young women on the verge of repossession, rent for one and utilities for another. The mission that Maimah has set upon is quite an endeavor, but with your support of this Ironman event and sponsorship, Tigerlily will be able to help more young women with meals, buddy bags, financial assistance, babysitting, cleaning and more. I ask for your financial sponsorship of this event, so that we can together be able to provide more support to Tigerlily and the young women it supports. Please make donations on the Janus website at http://januscharitychallenge.kintera.org/cda10/davidberman.
Dr. David Berman