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Supporting a cause: Bra-Dazzled benefits Cumberland Valley Breast Care Alliance

September 24, 2009|By TIFFANY ARNOLD

  • View the "Bra-Dazzled" slideshow.

    CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. - Bras are made for support, but the bras in Penny Shaul's storefront window - bras made from vinyl records, feathers, small potatoes and much more - show support for a local organization's fight against breast cancer.

    "This one's mine," said Shaul, owner of Here's Looking at You boutique in downtown Chambersburg, indicating a butterfly-themed bra she made. "It was inspired by a quote I read, that once the caterpillar thought his life was over, (but) it became a beautiful butterfly."

    On Sunday, the Cumberland Valley Breast Care Alliance (CVBCA) will host a fundraiser, Bra-Dazzled, at Orchards Restaurant and Lounge in Chambersburg. The event is usually a fashion show and a silent auction, but this year, a display of artistic bras has been added to the mix, said CVBCA founder Sharon Brosious.

    These bras are too unconventional to wear. But that's because Brosious and Shaul are trying to make a point: The bras are a literal reminder for women to get their mammograms and to routinely self-examine their breasts.

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Sunday isn't your only chance to see the bras, though CVBCA is no longer accepting reservations for the dinner, but the bras - which Brosious said were Shaul's idea - will be displayed at upcoming CVBCA events.

The Cumberland Valley Breast Care Alliance is a nonprofit, Christian-based organization that serves women recently diagnosed with breast cancer in Chambersburg and three nearby communities. The CVBCA also offers free mammograms to people who can't afford them. Last year, CVBCA served 97 newly diagnosed women; it has already served 94 clients this year.

According to American Cancer Society estimates, 562,340 people will die of some form of cancer this year - about 1,500 people a day. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, breast cancer is one of the most common cancers among women.

"Early detection is the key," Brosious said. "It improves your chances of long-term survival."

Brosious said she founded CVBCA 12 years ago after her sister, Patti Adams, died of breast cancer.

Brosious said in 2008, 76 women took advantage of the CVBCA's free mammogram program. Six of those women were diagnosed with breast cancer.

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