International fashion and fragrance icon, Carolina Herrera de Báez, has donated R5 million over the next five years to fight breast cancer. In collaboration with the Breast Health Foundation, the Support with a Smile initiative is aimed at providing palliative care for breast cancer survivors. Carolina Herrera de Báez will join forces with the BHF founder, Dr Carol Ann Benn, in providing emotional, physical, practical and spiritual support for patients and survivors. The Support with a Smile initiative is aimed at encouraging a cancer defeating spirit in patients and their families, through assisting in recovery. What sets palliative care apart from hospice care is that the support and comfort provided to patient begins at diagnosis, throughout treatment and well beyond recovery. The initiative was launched at the Breast Clinic at the Helen Joseph Hospital.
De Báez concluded her visit with a glamorous and fun-filled pink-themed, Carolina Herrera tea party, held on the lawns of Glenshiel, St John’s Priory in Westcliff, Johannesburg.
MC at the event, Jo-Ann Strauss, kicked off the proceedings, which included thought provoking speeches by Dhlomo, Benn, De Báez and breast cancer survivor, Ntokozo Dludla, a community educator from the Breast Health Foundation. Dludla shared the heartfelt story of her breast cancer journey from diagnosis to treatment.
The crowd was also introduced to Boitumelo Masilo, another cancer survivor and creator of the
THINGYMABOOB. The key ring charm is a BHF initiative and is used as an educational tool. Each bead represents the average size lump found in the different stages of the disease.
The speeches were followed by an auction, featuring original and one of a kind items, including Jenna Clifford home ware, Carolina Herrera bags, the CH pink fragrance called Wish, a CH ball gown (supplied by Luminance) as well as personal styling services. Over R80 000 was raised on the day for this cause.
Guests were then asked to add a final show of support by tying a pink ribbon onto the Support with a Smile mascot, the CH mannequin. The symbolic, life-size woman is made of wire and wears a beaded bodice and African hat. While tying a ribbon to the mascot’s skirt, each well- wisher could make a wish for a special loved one. Once her skirt is complete, the CH mannequin will be auctioned off in 2014 to raise more funds for the Breast Health Foundation.