Women are being bombarded with pink everywhere this month, all part of National Breast Cancer Awareness month. Smart women know that just adding pink does not necessarily mean supporting breast cancer charities.
I don’t know about you, but in the past few days I’ve been hit with advertising asking me to buy pink versions of the following: make-up, hair spray, nail polish, make-up cases, software, candles, vacuum cleaners, teddy bears, razors, shampoo, body wash, body lotion, hair dryers, flat irons, hair brushes, necklaces, bracelets, socks, hats, t-shirts, sweatshirts, blankets, shoes, slippers, aprons, pajamas, robes, purses, pens, note paper, milk, vitamins, foods, car accessories, and on and on and on.
How odd that there is so much focus on buying a product and little focus on helping the woman who actually has breast cancer or even helping yourself to better understand what is, after all, a serious illness.
We women are the key shoppers in our families, and the marketing world knows this. We also are compassionate people who want to help our sisters in need, and the marketing world knows that too. There is no law that says a marketer who puts a pink ribbon on a product must also support a charity and many of the pink products don’t support anything but company profits.
Cause-related marketing programs are wonderful and help many legitimate nonprofit groups raise money for research, education and support that is truly helpful. So how can you tell if a “pink’ product is truly helping other women through legitimate charities? The answer is to look beyond the pink ribbon to find the fine print.
• Is there a link to a website that provides more information and shows the company is serious about their support?
• Is there a specific statement about which charity is supported, or is the statement vague and open to interpretation?
• If there is a statement about supporting a charity, is the charity one you recognize or is it one you’ve never heard of or one that looks a lot like a legitimate charity but doesn’t quite cut it?
The bottom line is, the best thing you can do to help other women is to read the fine print on “pink” product labels and make an informed decision before you purchase.
Here are some other ways to support those with breast cancer:
• Make a direct donation
• Volunteer your time and/or services to a reputable charity
• Participate in a reputable charity’s fund raising events or support programs
• Help out a friend who has breast cancer – offer to do chores, provide transportation, cook appropriate homemade meals, whatever your friend needs
Can you think of other ways? We'd love to hear from you!
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