By Holly Bluemlein
Pink tulips, representing hope in the fight against breast cancer, were planted in Brigham Square Tuesday, Oct. 17.
This was the second year that members of the BYU community have gathered to plant the flowers in observation of National Breast Cancer Month.
Some people do not understand how planting tulips helps the fight against breast cancer, says LeNae Valentine, coordinator of Women’s Services and Resource.
“For one thing, the tulips show the hope of those who have survived the horrible ordeal of breast cancer,” Valentine says. “But more importantly, it makes students aware of breast cancer.”
The hope is that planting flowers will help people develop habits that will lead to early detection and prevention so that breast cancer will decrease in the future, Valentine said.
Among the students who met to plant the bulbs was Jacob Reynolds, 21, a sophomore from Orem, majoring in philosophy.
Reynold’s mother fought breast cancer for 10 years.
He now takes any opportunities that he can to tell others about breast cancer. Reynolds wears a pink ribbon during all of Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
“Since I started wearing it, people ask me why, and I tell them about my mom. Then I tell them to do their check-ups,” Reynolds says.
The Breast Health Institute recommends women do a breast self-examination monthly after age 20. The BHI also encourages women to get a clinical check-up, including a mammogram, every three years from age 20-40. After turning 40, women should get mammograms every year.
Because early detection is essential in the fight against breast cancer, Reynolds advised everyone to do self-tests and have mammograms.
The tulip planting is a big event and a symbol of hope, but it is not the most important thing that is happening for Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Meg Thunell, program director for Women’s Services and Resources.
The speeches are also important because they make a difference, she said.
The most important thing the Women’s Services and Resources has planned for October is the collection of pink Yoplait yogurt lids. The lids will provide money to fight breast cancer, Thunell said.