Bras with a Cause!

September 7, 2008 11:12:58 AM PDT
Raising money for any good cause is a challenge but two non-profit organizations in the South Valley have come together for a common cause.The unique result is stopping people in their tracks. When we arrived at Arts Visalia in that city's downtown we found several young women standing and just looking, "Jordan Heaton, Visalia resident, I drove by the other day and saw it and i just had to pull over. I kept staring at it."

Jordan and her friends are talking about a huge banner hanging over the entrance to Arts Visalia. On it are more than a hundred decorated bras with a cause. Each designed to send a single message about cancer.

Mary Jo Eastes volunteers for arts Visalia. When asked to join a team in the American Cancer Society's - Relay for Life. But instead she convinced Arts Visalia to sponsor this banner of hope. You decorate the bra send it and a 10 dollar donation to Arts Visalia and you've joined the cause to fight breast cancer. Mary Jo says, "We did everything we possibly could to get anybody and everybody who's been touched by cancer to bring a bra in."

And that's just what two-time breast cancer survivor Nancy Zelaski did, "It brings attention, it brings creativity." Since 1984, Zelaski has beaten back cancer twice, undergone two lumpectomies, radiation and finally a double mastectomy with breast reconstruction. It has been a long, challenging road, "That first diagnosis just takes your breathe away then you just go into autopilot and just do what you have to do."

This survivor believes the unique effort to raise money will pay off. Nine of each ten dollar donation goes directly to the Relay for Life. And on September 20 the Banner of Hope will be displayed at the relay site. Arts Visalia plans to make this an annual event says Mary Jo Eastes, "Next year? Bigger and better we're gonna do Briefs and Bras."

Back out on the street as we were heading back to Fresno to file this story those three young women were ready to signup. Heather Hoffman and her friends had found a way to get involved in the fight against cancer, "Some one told me about it but I hadn't seen it till we pulled up. It's neat."

When I asked if she had made one she replied, "No, no. but we need to. Come take a look!"

Follow the links found here if you want to get involved:

Arts Visalia Banner of Hope
559-739-0905

American Cancer Society Relay For Life

Stand Up To Cancer Website

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