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Each holiday season, the Gift of Life partners with Exxpress Mart stores to raise money to support our mission of providing life-saving medical screenings to medically underserved Southeast Texans.

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Saving Lives in Southeast Texas: Local Men Receive Free Health Checks

Nearly 150 Southeast Texas men were man enough to get checked at free prostate cancer screening events provided by the Gift of Life and its medical partner Baptist Hospitals of Southeast Texas in Beaumont and Port Arthur.

BRA-vo! Applause for the Cause: “Bosom Buddies” in the Fight against Breast Cancer

The Gift of Life will celebrate National Breast Cancer Awareness Month with breast cancer survivors and supporters at its 5th Annual BRA-vo! Applause for the Cause Celebration Reception on Thursday, October 30 from 5:00 pm until 7:00 pm at the Art Museum of Southeast Texas (500 Main Street • Beaumont). The reception kicks off the highly-anticipated BRA-vo! project exhibit, which inspires thousands of Southeast Texans with the expressive designs and courageous spirit of breast cancer survivors through poignant bra artwork.
 
Using bras as an expressive palate to convey breast cancer survivors’ stories and further emotional healing, these bras illustrate the touching cancer journey of those most impacted by the disease and heighten the importance of education and early detection.
 
This year’s project is even more meaningful, with the addition of a new Bosom Buddies initiative. “We are tickled pink by the regional involvement of so many community leaders through our Bosom Buddies project,” said Marty Craig, event chair. “We know that this year’s reception is going to be bigger than ever, with fabulous fun and food! But, more importantly, our efforts benefit the very worthy cause of spreading awareness of breast cancer!” 
 
Launched through social media, Bosom Buddies allows community businesses, organizations and individuals to generate awareness and funds for the Gift of Life through their own personalized bras. These unique designs will be auctioned at the BRA-vo! Celebration Reception, with all funds benefiting the Gift of Life Breast Cancer Program.
 
The BRA-auction will commence on Wednesday, October 22, with an online campaign unveiled by the Gift of Life through bravo.giftoflifebmt.org. Participants can vote and bid for their favorite bras online, culminating with a final showing and auction at the BRA-vo! Celebration Reception.
 
Craig, who is chairing the imaginative project, is joined by team members: Rose Blount, Sandy Fertitta and Kathy Thomas.
 
From a small grassroots effort, the Julie Rogers “Gift of Life” Program has grown to provide lifesaving education and services to individuals across seven Southeast Texas counties. For nearly 20 years, the program has provided breast and prostate cancer screenings; extensive educational outreach focusing on breast, prostate, testicular ovarian and other gynecological cancers; breast and prostate cancer support groups for patients, survivors, family members and caregivers; continuing education seminars for medical professionals; and a tobacco prevention program for adults and youth. 
 
Annually, the Gift of Life provides more than 2,200 free mammograms and clinical breast exams for medically underserved individuals each year, with follow-up care for those who need additional testing and treatment. Since inception, the organization has helped extend the lives of nearly 175 women whose breast cancer was diagnosed through Gift of Life medical screenings and who were given access to treatment. Last year, the Gift of Life provided 2,299 free mammograms, which detected breast cancer in 11 women. Already this year (January through September), the Gift of Life has provided 1,701 clinical breast exams and mammograms, diagnosing the disease in 13 women, who are now undergoing treatment.
 
For more information about the Gift of Life, please call 409.833.3663. Additional details about the BRA-vo! Project can be directed to the Gift of Life BRA-Assistant, Blake Royer, at 409.861.5902 or broyer [at] giftoflifebmt [dot] org or by visiting bravo.giftoflifebmt.org.

2014 Julie Richardson Procter Ribbon Run Color Rush

Wow! Southeast Texas, you are amazing!
 
For the 4th Saturday morning in October, you made Downtown Beaumont the most pink and teal place on earth! More than 6,000 Southeast Texans gathered at the Julie Richardson Procter 5K Ribbon Run Color Rush to celebrate life and raise awareness of breast, ovarian and other gynecological cancers.
 
Participants formed huge teams honoring cancer survivors, raised money for a great cause, donned crazy costumes, perused our Wellness Village, shared their cancer journey with others, enjoyed food and fun, won prizes, and, in general, had a great time! The beautiful celebration of survivorship was punctuated by a butterfly release which provided such an inspirational end to the day.
 
Also recognized at the event were the Angels Among Us, a group of women who have furthered the Gift of Life's mission of life-saving awareness and education. The honorees included Irene Aydelott, RN, Marty Craig, Charline Dauphin, Sandy Fertitta, Mary Jane Garth, Sallye Keith, Gwendolyn Lavalais, MD, Tanya Lee, Beverly Parker, PhD, Linda Penland, Cindy Stinson, PhD, APRN-BC, Anne Winslow, RN, MSN, FNP-C .
 
The 5K honored the loving memory of Julie Richardson Procter, a respected local attorney and devoted Gift of Life board member and volunteer who passed away after a courageous battle with ovarian cancer. It was Procter’s wish that her illness would serve as a meaningful platform to educate women about the risks and symptoms of the disease.
 
All proceeds from the event benefited the Gift of Life’s breast and ovarian cancer initiatives, which impact thousands of Southeast Texans each year. Along the route, breast and ovarian cancer educational awareness messages were shared to underscore the mission of the event.
 
It takes a village to create such an incredible event. The Gift of Life extends its gratitude to our title sponsors: Casa Olé, H-E-B and Jason’s Deli; and the Wellness Village presenters, Lamar University healthcare education departments, Mary Kay Representatives, Walgreen’s, Jefferson County Medical Society, Gulf Coast Health Center, Inc., WellCare and Previty Vein Clinic.

See photos from the 5K on our Flickr page, or share your pictures by tweeting @golbeaumont, on instagram at @giftoflifebmt, or following us on facebook!