Reporting Daryl Ruiter
BROOKLYN (92.3 The Fan) – Think Pink.
October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month and the Cleveland Browns along with the rest of the NFL are working to help raise awareness as well as funds for research.
During last Sunday’s game against Tennessee players from both teams wore pink uniform accessories as a tribute to help raise awareness.
The Browns have also formed a unique partnership this year with the Cleveland Clinic and Panera Bread to help raise money for Breast Cancer research.
During the month of October Panera Bread will be selling ‘Pink Ribbon Bagels’ along with limited edition Browns Travel Mugs and a portion of the proceeds will be donated to the Survivorship Program at the Cleveland Clinic Taussig Cancer Institute.
On Wednesday, October 5th 100% of the proceeds for the day from the bagel and mug sales will be donated.
Browns players appeared Tuesday night at various local Panera Bread stores to help kick off the program. Safety Mike Adams visited the Panera Bread on Tiedeman Rd. in Brooklyn where he mingled with fans, took pictures and signed autographs.
“It’s really great,” Adams says. “It’s a chance for people to see us without our helmet. We play a game but we are part of the community.”
Unfortunately, cancer awareness hits home for Adams.
“My mom passed in 2004 from ovarian cancer,” Adams said. “I’m always doing things with cancer awareness. I get emotional just talking about it but I’m always supportive of it.”
She never got to see Adams realize his dream of playing in the NFL – that is something sticks with him each day that he suits up for the Browns.
For the Cleveland Clinic, fundraising is only part of the partnership with the Browns and Panera – raising awareness is as well.
Dr. Halle Moore, M.D., who is an Oncologist at the Cleveland Clinic Taussig Cancer Institute, says that early detection of breast cancer is the key to survival and the only way to detect it is to get checked.
“It’s very important to increase public awareness of our efforts to promote screening and early detection of breast cancer,” Dr. Moore said. “If we can get people aware and get their cancer diagnosed at an earlier stage it makes the treatments that need to be recommended simpler.”
In addition to public awareness for early detection, Dr. Moore said this year’s focus is also on survivorship.
“It’s something we are really focused on at the Cleveland Clinic,” Dr. Moore said. “It incorporates not only the treatment of the cancer but managing the complications related to the treatment to the long term effects of the cancer itself and life beyond breast cancer.”
The Survivorship Program at the Cleveland Clinic Taussig Cancer Institute offers support for patients and families facing the challenges that come with a cancer diagnosis as well as the needs of cancer survivors.
Having players like Adams and the Browns involved means a lot to the Clinic and its patients.
“It’s great what a draw they are,” Dr. Moore said. “The wives of the Browns players were at the Cleveland Clinic just meeting patients and showing support for what they are going through and it really means a lot to them.”
In addition to making regular appearances around town at various community events, Adams quietly operates ‘The Rising Stars Foundation,’ which he co-founded in 2006.
The goal of Adams’ foundation is to help empower today’s youth academically, socially and behaviorally. Adams said that his ultimate goal is to establish a community center in his hometown of Paterson, New Jersey for kids to be able to socialize and participate in community activities.
Adams, who also holds an annual charitable fundraiser in Cleveland, is ironing out the details of this year’s event which is tentatively scheduled for later this month.