Secondary Breast Cancer Awareness Day (13 October)

Hi everyone

I know it’s still a way off but I wanted to let you know about our plans to bring Secondary Breast Cancer Awareness Day to the UK.

It’s the first time there has been an awareness day for secondary breast cancer in the UK, and we hope that it will become an annual fixture in the calendar.

It will take place on 13 October, to fit in with global metastatic breast cancer awareness day, which has been growing in the US over the past few years. (You can see a bit more about the US day here

We’ve been working to bring it to the UK in response to people’s feedback that people with secondary breast cancer often feel invisible and ignored, especially during Breast Cancer Awareness Month (but also the rest of the time).

We’ve developed our plans for this year in consultation both with people with secondary breast cancer and people with primary breast cancer, and they helped us choose the look and feel of the campaign as well as the messages.

The main message of the awareness day this year is a “living with secondary breast cancer” message. The work we did with people with secondary breast cancer made it clear that most people wanted the day to have a positive message but that this should be balanced with the realities of being diagnosed with and living with secondary breast cancer.

We know that general awareness about secondary breast cancer is very low, so we are hoping to be able to educate people about it in general. We will also be highlighting the lack of statistics on women with secondary breast cancer and encouraging women who have been diagnosed with secondary breast cancer to use Breast Cancer Care’s specialist services if they need support.

So what will the day look like? There will be a series of adverts, possibly on a few billboards but definitely in newspapers and magazines (we’re still finalising plans). There will be articles in Zest & Woman&Home magazines, featuring interviews with women with secondary breast cancer. (Those magazines will be on the shelves shortly.) There will be a campaigning event in Westminster and regional launch events organised by the Sheffield, Cardiff and Glasgow centres. We hope we will get some press coverage, and we will also be fundraising for our secondary services.

How can you get involved? We really hope people will want to get involved with the day and help to make it a big success. There will be campaign postcards, which we’d like you to hand out to people. If you’d like to be sent some postcards (up to 20) please email <script type=“text/javascript”>eval(unescape(‘%64%6f%63%75%6d%65%6e%74%2e%77%72%69%74%65%28%27%3c%61%20%68%72%65%66%3d%22%6d%61%69%6c%74%6f%3a%73%65%63%6f%6e%64%61%72%79%40%62%72%65%61%73%74%63%61%6e%63%65%72%63%61%72%65%2e%6f%72%67%2e%75%6b%22%3e%73%65%63%6f%6e%64%61%72%79%40%62%72%65%61%73%74%63%61%6e%63%65%72%63%61%72%65%2e%6f%72%67%2e%75%6b%3c%2f%61%3e%27%29%3b’))</script>. They’ll be available from mid-September but feel free to email now. We’d love you to attend the regional launch events if you can. You may receive an invitation directly, but if not please contact your local centre for more information. When the campaign launches, there will be campaigning actions to take and there will also be the opportunity to tell your story and/or write a message of support to people with secondary breast cancer. These messages will be displayed on our website.

But perhaps most importantly we’d like you to spread the word about the day. Talk to your family and friends about it and why we’re doing it, and encourage them to get involved. Perhaps you’d like to hold your own event or write to your local paper?

We need your help to make the day a success, so we can build on it in future years, to really establish the day at the heart of Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

If you’ve got questions or want to get more involved, please email <script type=“text/javascript”>eval(unescape(‘%64%6f%63%75%6d%65%6e%74%2e%77%72%69%74%65%28%27%3c%61%20%68%72%65%66%3d%22%6d%61%69%6c%74%6f%3a%73%65%63%6f%6e%64%61%72%79%40%62%72%65%61%73%74%63%61%6e%63%65%72%63%61%72%65%2e%6f%72%67%2e%75%6b%22%3e%73%65%63%6f%6e%64%61%72%79%40%62%72%65%61%73%74%63%61%6e%63%65%72%63%61%72%65%2e%6f%72%67%2e%75%6b%3c%2f%61%3e%27%29%3b’))</script> or look out for more updates.

Just a quick update on this.

The first part of this campaign has arrived. October’s issue of Woman&Home magazine is now available and features an interview with Ann Fingret, who has been living with secondary breast cancer for 11 years. The article also mentions Secondary Breast Cancer Awareness Day.

This week’s Zest magazine features Emma Freeborn, who has been diagnosed with secondary breast cancer. She campaigns for better support for people with secondary breast cancer. The article also mentions Secondary Breast Cancer Awareness Day.

Any more news on the Awareness Day? It’s getting nearer…

This is where we’re up to:

  • We have completed the photo shoot with the women who will be featured in the ad campaign (all of whom have been diagnosed with secondary breast cancer) and the adverts are being placed as we speak. We have also secured billboard space in the home towns of three of the models.

  • Some research conducted by Breast Cancer Care’s Liz Reed was published last week, which showed there is inadequate support for people diagnosed with secondary breast cancer. It was published in the European Journal of Cancer Care and you can see more about it here

  • We are working on the Awareness Day website, which will go live before 13 October. It will highlight the awareness day, our campaign for better support for people affected by secondary breast cancer, links to our services for people affected by secondary breast cancer, and a space for people to leave messages of support for the campaign and/or make a donation.

  • There will be events in Westminster, Sheffield, Glasgow and Cardiff. If you would like to be involved in any of those events, please contact <script type=“text/javascript”>eval(unescape(‘%64%6f%63%75%6d%65%6e%74%2e%77%72%69%74%65%28%27%3c%61%20%68%72%65%66%3d%22%6d%61%69%6c%74%6f%3a%73%65%63%6f%6e%64%61%72%79%40%62%72%65%61%73%74%63%61%6e%63%65%72%63%61%72%65%2e%6f%72%67%2e%75%6b%22%3e%73%65%63%6f%6e%64%61%72%79%40%62%72%65%61%73%74%63%61%6e%63%65%72%63%61%72%65%2e%6f%72%67%2e%75%6b%3c%2f%61%3e%27%29%3b’))</script>.

  • There will be special live chat sessions around the day, about talking to children when a parent has been diagnosed with secondary breast cancer, and sessions for partners of people affected by secondary breast cancer. More info here:

  • Steve Brine MP, Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group on breast cancer, has put down an Early Day Motion about the day, and we will be asking people to contact their MP to ask them to sign it to show their support. There will be more details about this later, but if you want to contact your MP now, the Early Day Motion is EDM 771 (see here

There are a few other things going on, and we’ll be integrating our secondary breast cancer awareness messages into lots of our other October activities, such as QVC’s annual “Be Aware Show You Care” programme.

Once again, if you want to get involved in the events or you want campaign postcards to hand out to your friends and contacts, please contact us on <script type=“text/javascript”>eval(unescape(‘%64%6f%63%75%6d%65%6e%74%2e%77%72%69%74%65%28%27%3c%61%20%68%72%65%66%3d%22%6d%61%69%6c%74%6f%3a%73%65%63%6f%6e%64%61%72%79%40%62%72%65%61%73%74%63%61%6e%63%65%72%63%61%72%65%2e%6f%72%67%2e%75%6b%22%3e%73%65%63%6f%6e%64%61%72%79%40%62%72%65%61%73%74%63%61%6e%63%65%72%63%61%72%65%2e%6f%72%67%2e%75%6b%3c%2f%61%3e%27%29%3b’))</script>.

Is anything going to be mentioned on TV - especially the morning shows like BBC Breakfast or ITV Daybreak ?

Hi lizcat

Our press team is working on getting coverage for the day as widely as possible. Most of it won’t be able to be confirmed until much nearer the time, but we’ll try to let you know when we know, so you can look out for it.


Thanks - I’ll be on hols then but hope to be able to watch as there will be a tv with BBC and ITV and a few others.

Two things to update you on today:

  1. Three billboards, each featuring one of the models from the campaign, went up today, in Nottingham, Birmingham and Milton Keynes. We’d love to know if anyone in those places has spotted them!

  2. We’re looking for people affected by secondary breast cancer to take part in a publicity stunt on the morning 13 October in Westminster, London.

It will be extremely simple with very little physical activity required. There will be a photographer so you will need to be comfortable having your photo taken for use in regional and national print media and your image could also appear on television. You would need to be available from 9-11am in Westminster.

***If you are interested in taking part or would like more information please email <script type=“text/javascript”>eval(unescape(‘%64%6f%63%75%6d%65%6e%74%2e%77%72%69%74%65%28%27%3c%61%20%68%72%65%66%3d%22%6d%61%69%6c%74%6f%3a%73%65%63%6f%6e%64%61%72%79%40%62%72%65%61%73%74%63%61%6e%63%65%72%63%61%72%65%2e%6f%72%67%2e%75%6b%22%3e%73%65%63%6f%6e%64%61%72%79%40%62%72%65%61%73%74%63%61%6e%63%65%72%63%61%72%65%2e%6f%72%67%2e%75%6b%3c%2f%61%3e%27%29%3b’))</script>*** stating how you have been affected by breast cancer. Regrettably we only have very limited resources to spend on travel costs, so you will need to be in easy reach of London. Please could you also state the approximate amount of your travel costs for taking part too and we will do our best to cover this for as many people as possible.

The website for Secondary Breast Cancer Awareness Day has gone live today

If you go to this page, you can see the adverts and films featuring the women with secondary breast cancer who are at the centre of this campaign

Please see my earlier posts for details of some of the other activities we’re doing to promote the day and contact <script type=“text/javascript”>eval(unescape(‘%64%6f%63%75%6d%65%6e%74%2e%77%72%69%74%65%28%27%3c%61%20%68%72%65%66%3d%22%6d%61%69%6c%74%6f%3a%73%65%63%6f%6e%64%61%72%79%40%62%72%65%61%73%74%63%61%6e%63%65%72%63%61%72%65%2e%6f%72%67%2e%75%6b%22%3e%73%65%63%6f%6e%64%61%72%79%40%62%72%65%61%73%74%63%61%6e%63%65%72%63%61%72%65%2e%6f%72%67%2e%75%6b%3c%2f%61%3e%27%29%3b’))</script> to get involved.

We’re especially looking for people affected by secondary breast cancer to take part in the campaign photo shoot in London on 13 October. If you’re interested, please email <script type=“text/javascript”>eval(unescape(‘%64%6f%63%75%6d%65%6e%74%2e%77%72%69%74%65%28%27%3c%61%20%68%72%65%66%3d%22%6d%61%69%6c%74%6f%3a%73%65%63%6f%6e%64%61%72%79%40%62%72%65%61%73%74%63%61%6e%63%65%72%63%61%72%65%2e%6f%72%67%2e%75%6b%22%3e%73%65%63%6f%6e%64%61%72%79%40%62%72%65%61%73%74%63%61%6e%63%65%72%63%61%72%65%2e%6f%72%67%2e%75%6b%3c%2f%61%3e%27%29%3b’))</script>.