2018 Breast Cancer Awareness coins
October is Breast Cancer Awareness month! This entire month is dedicated to raising awareness on Breast Cancer research and education. It's intention is to educate people about early screening and tests that can help detect breast cancer. It is also the month where maximum funds are raised by different organizations to further the Breast Cancer Research objective. The National Breast Cancer Awareness Month as it is called in the USA, was first founded in October 1985; the reason why October was chosen!
Breast Cancer is the most common cancer among women and some men (it is rare among men, but it is there!) and is the 5th main cause of cancer deaths! Breast Cancer awareness started as a movement in the late 80's and strengthened in the early 90's with the 'pink ribbon'.
This year the Breast Cancer Awareness coins were released. This post gives an overview of these coins and a background of Breast Cancer Awareness.
2018 Breast Cancer Awareness coin
Ribbons are a simple way to support a cause; for instance a red ribbon is a world-wide symbol for AIDS awareness. Likewise the pink ribbon is synonymous to breast cancer awareness and it's advocacy.
The pink ribbon signifies femininity, beauty and above all health. The 'Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation', currently known as the 'Susan G. Komen for the Cure', uses a pink ribbon runner as it's logo. The foundation gets the name from 'Susan Goodman Komen' who was diagnosed with breast cancer at the age of 33 and died 3 years later. Her younger sister, Nancy Goodman Brinker, promised Susan that she will work to eradicate breast cancer by making women more aware of cancer and its treatments. It is one of the largest Breast Cancer Awareness foundations in the world now.
Other Breast Cancer Awareness programs actually discourage the 'pink ribbon' symbol with messages like 'Think before you pink' and 'Not just ribbons', in order to focus more on the substantive issues of Breast Cancer like widespread access to Cancer treatment, research, etc. In spite of all this the 'pink ribbon' is still considered to be a successful symbol for Breast Cancer Awareness around the world.
This year's Commemorative coins includes the Breast Cancer Awareness coins that are coming out in different denominations; $5 Pink Gold, $1 Silver, 50 cents Silver. The coins sport a common obverse and reverse designs. The design is by artist Emily Damstra, a U.S. Mint Artistic Infusion Program artist. She has also designed coins for the Royal Canadian Mint.
The obverse design features two women. The older woman has her hands on her chest and a relieved expression on her face. The younger woman, with a scarf on her head, holds one hand over her chest and the other raised in a fist as if she is ready to fight. A butterfly flies above the two women and a ribbon is shown near the young woman. Damstra’s obverse design was sculpted by U.S. Mint Sculptor-Engraver Phebe Hemphill.
Her reverse design depicts a tiger swallowtail butterfly in flight, a symbol of hope. The design was sculpted by U.S. Mint Sculptor-Engraver Renata Gordon.