Mon | Apr 6, 2020

Pink and Crocs for breast cancer awareness

Published:Sunday | December 1, 2019 | 6:48 AMDave Rodney - Contributor

St Hugh’s High School in Kingston celebrated Breast Cancer Awareness Month through commemorating October 11 as Pink and Crocs Day.

To help build awareness among the students, a former student and breast cancer survivor, Christene King, was invited to address the student body about her journey with breast cancer.

Hundreds of girls dressed in pink and wearing the now fashionable and comfortable ‘Crocs’ footwear listened attentively as King, a media executive, spoke about aspects of her encounter with breast cancer, from screening and early detection to treatment, and life after overcoming breast cancer.

“I am thankful and honoured to have been invited to address the student body,” the alumna and specially invited guest revealed after the event. “I think the message resonated that it is not too early to start doing self-checks and adopting a healthy and balanced lifestyle while being kind to themselves and everyone else,” she added.

Although this year is a first for Pink and Crocs Day, the initiative was started last year by Jossett Kelly, head of the school’s fundraising committee, who enjoyed success with ‘Pink Day’ in 2018, raising funds for the Jamaica Cancer Society.

Larger celebration

This year, the effort was expanded to become a larger celebration that included capitalising on the Crocs trend, and creating various competitions where the vibrant creativity of the girls was on display.

“The Pink and Crocs celebration was excellent,” acting principal Keisha-Ann Spooner told The Gleaner. “It was promoted in the PTA and in parent meetings and the support was very strong. It surpassed our expectations,” she shared.

St Hugh’s High School is celebrating its 120th anniversary. The all-girls institution was started as Deaconess Home School on Hanover Street in downtown Kingston by Madeline Thomas and the late Archbishop of the West Indies, Enos Nuttall, with 24 students. The school later relocated to its present location on Leinster Road and the student body has now grown to almost 1,400 girls. A flurry of activities have been planned for later this year to mark the milestone.

According to the Pan American Health Organization, breast cancer is the ­leading cancer among Jamaican women, and the disorder is being ­diagnosed at a younger age.