Pink positive

Corporate giving, as my friend and colleague Morra reminded me, has been the bedrock of philanthropic efforts since at least Andrew Carnegie and his cohort.  And for that, I am grateful, as matters of social justice (poverty, equality, opportunity, universal education, health) are gravely important to me, as a member of a community (or several overlapping communities).  As such, I don’t want to paint all “pink” efforts to fight breast cancer as bad or ineffective — they certainly aren’t — and I’d like to give the most promising ones equal time here this week.

To that end, what “pink” promotions appeal to you this month?  What has impressed you?  What do you like?  I’ll take a look into them if you haven’t yet, and find out what percentage they give per sale, if they cap their donations at a certain amount, and where the money goes — and I’ll post the results here throughout the week. 

Here is an example of a clear campaign that is making a significant donation per action:

My new friend Jenny (from Get out, Gertrude!) likes the Tim Tam campaign in New Zealand.  Their site explains:

  • Tim Tam Breast Buddies is continuing its support of the Breast Cancer Aotearoa Coalition. The funds raised will go towards their goal of providing a ‘Step by Step’ kit to all 2500 women newly diagnosed with breast cancer each year (in New Zealand). The ‘Step by Step’ kit provides information and support resources to help women through their journey. Tim Tam Breast Buddies will kick start the fundraising with a donation of $10,000 and in addition will match every other donation received dollar for dollar… up to $55,000.”   Tim Tam gets credit for clarity, for stating minimums and maximums, and for explaining clearly where the donation goes and what its impact will be.  (Plus, Kate and Jenny say Tim Tams are delicious!)

The pink ribbons are a nice thought throughout the year, as they (ostensibly) remind people do do self-exams, and show support for breast cancer survivors/fighters.  When they come all at once (like Sunday’s comics insert), it can be pretty overwhelming.  But I really liked how one comic strip took it to the next level:

  • Rhymes With Orange featured one of its characters talking frankly about her mastectomy to a friend, saying, “One thing I discovered with my mastectomy is that I had to reassure everyone I’d be all right….” which is true and real and painful and awesome all rolled in together. And when the character showed confidence and poise by following it up with a joke, I smiled in recognition of all my brave, brave friends, who face this head-on, and who honestly do want to make it easier on their friends and spouses, who shouldn’t have to — but do — suffer along with them.  (Note: the strip also features a link to, the parent group of ThinkBeforeYouPink, and King Features encourages donations to cancer charities on its comicsgopink site.) Thanks for taking it beyond the pink, Hilary Price.

And in the category of most improved:

  • Dannon yogurt.  Dannon clearly identifies the donation (10 cents per lid), minimum ($500,000) and maximum ($1,500,000) donations, and the beneficiary: National Breast Cancer Foundation, Inc.  AND this year, you don’t have to waste postage mailing in slimy lids — just write down the code under the lid and enter it at  That’s a huge improvement, and one I would support.  (The previous method often had us spending more in postage than the company donated to the cause.)

What campaigns have impressed you so far this year?


12 Responses to Pink positive

  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Susan N, Moms Who Blog. Moms Who Blog said: Pink positive […]

  2. The thing I like most about the Timtam campaign is, you don’t have to buy timtams to contribute.
    … Of course, that won’t stop me! 😀
    I saw a “Breast Cancer pink” portable greenhouse today at a garden show, and wondered what on earth was going on. I read the fine print, and Winter Gardenz were (are) auctioning the greenhouse on TradeMe (our version of e-Bay), with all proceeds going to “breast cancer research” (they don’t name an actual recipient). The greenhouses normally sell for NZ$1,995; hopefully they will raise more than that.

  3. I saw this one on twitter today: Tweet using #projectpink hashtag and @thepumastore will give $1/tweet to a breast cancer charity chosen by people who vote at their site:

    They’re only up to $1600, says twitter user @michielb….

  4. I always like “Portions of proceeds” going to. I was surprised to see a lot of pink ribbon campaign stuff at a department store here. It’s like it comes in waves, but I guess that’s how everything goes.
    Glad to see so many positive things listed here!

  5. sutari says:

    The local radio station where I live has paired up with a local salon to put pink in your hair. The morning show hosts both had it done. Here is first paragraph from the radio station web site about this:

    How you can help: Stop by Salono Salono – 600 Caroline Street in Fredericksburg…have them put a pink stripe in your hair to show everyone you support Breast Cancer awareness. There are three different options of stripes: Immediately washable ($5 donation), temporary ($10 donation) and glue strip strand ($10 donation). All proceeds raised during the month of October will be donated to the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation.

    Not only is this a fun way to directly donate, but it is a VISIBLE way, that might encourage more to go for a stripe!

  6. Paula Ford says:

    In case you haven’t seen this, yesterday there was a great NYT article on pink ribbon fatigue

    Best wishes in this new round of chemo –
    Fellow IBC’er and academic,
    Paula Ford –

  7. I would note on the Dannon Yogurt that I bought 2 containers of yogurt (both quart sized), and they both have the same code on them. I’d be willing to bet that they printed the same code on MANY (hundreds? thousands?) containers, and are only donating $.10 per code…so they are probably donating far less than it would appear.

  8. Valerie says:

    Although this is Canadian, it still contributes towards research, so maybe some people would be interested. I did a 5K run for breast cancer last weekend and everyone who had registered as a survivor received a beautiful white and pink Swarovski crystal bracelet with a small pink ribbon charm attached at the clasp – delicate and subtle, very well made. There was an e-mail address and small note included and when I wrote to thank the creator, I received this in reply:
    Hi Valerie

    I am so pleased that you love your bracelet. Although I donate money, annually, to the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation, this year I wanted to do something special to celebrate my 30 years as a survivor. I believe that “one cannot have too much jewellery” and therefore decided to give the survivors a bracelet so that I, and they, will remember the excitement and emotions of the October 3, 2010 Run for the Cure.

    I thoroughly enjoyed being at the Run on Sunday and I am already preparing for the 2011 RUN FOR THE CURE. For every breast cancer bracelet ($25.00) that I sell from now until August 2011, I will donate one bracelet to the Run for the Cure 2011, and $2.50 to the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation. Already, I have 22 bracelets for next year, and I hope to achieve the same number, 300, as I personally donated this year.

    So, pass the word along – for future years: the more I sell, the more I can donate !!!!!

    I wish you the best on your survival road.


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