In Fairfield Conn. on Oct. 2, atop the Old Town Hall Green on Post Road, with circles of conversation and flat stone pathways, the ‘Pink Pledge and Jam’ event held its first kickoff event for the month of October: Breast Cancer Awareness Month. 

‘The Pink Pledge to Benefit the Norma Pfriem Breast Center’ acts as a fundraising campaign during the month of October. It benefits the Norma Pfriem Breast Center of Bridgeport Hospital and Yale-New Haven Health. The organization collects from individual charitable contributions, sponsorships from local companies or branches of corporations, etc. All proceeds are then able to provide funding for preventative measures including but not limited to mammograms, and they also are used to aid, support and treat women who are fighting breast cancer, regardless of their insurance status or financial situation.

 According to pinkpledge.org, over 40,0000 women having received “comprehensive services and programs from [the] Norma Pfriem Breast Center” since 1999, and over 10,000 having been taught about the prevention of breast cancer, through the center’s outreach and educational programs The Norma Pfriem Breast Center functions as a necessary guiding hand and leads those without support along a brighter path forward, during some of their darkest times.

Lying beside St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, the ‘Pink Pledge and Jam’ event included guest speakers, multiple dining options (such as Proof Pizza Truck, Bigelow Tea, etc.), along with live entertainment. The featured band for this year’s fundraiser was “Tangled Vine,” who played until the end of the night. Guest speakers of the event, including First Selectwoman of Fairfield Brenda Kupchick, who has walked with Pink Pledge every year for the past seven years, spoke about the importance of the Norma Pfriem’s Breast Centers’ mission and also of the importance of community in such matters. Specifically, she mentioned the exponential strength that can be bound by helping hands, using the analogy of a strand of hair which is insignificant compared to the strength of a tied rope. 

The fundraising events for Pink Pledge have proven themselves to be successful as well. Kate Pigue, the directive manager of Pink Pledge, says that over the course of the month of October, events like this one raise thousands of dollars for women fighting breast cancer. And on Friday evening, Fairfield demonstrated its ability to come together as a defining virtue.

However, what was particularly striking of all, was the walk that kicked off the event. All those who attended lined up below a pink arch and were led down the road by the Fairfield Police Department and the Fairfield Fire Department, carrying banners and signs, until all eventually returned again to the same pink arch. Not only was the walk beautiful because of the action within itself, but because it represented a positive visible shift with those who attended the event that night: all became a group. 

The event began with late afternoon sunbeams streaming around church spires, with all little groups setting up their chairs and picnics, speaking to new strangers. However, after the walk, all those present truly connected with one another because of the embodied action they partook in which made clear their mutual values. 

Once all reconvened on the Old Town Hall Greens, with only faint orange darkness over the horizon, all peoples at the event began to tie to one another, forging a community. Good conversation and general well-being followed all at an event for such a charitable cause; and because of these interactions, I am hopeful that it will secure the success and perpetuity of this fundraiser for years to come.

 

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