Nova Scotia native's story of hope helps fund Dragon Boat teams across Canada

MONTREAL, Nov. 30 /CNW Telbec/ - When New Glasgow, Nova Scotia native Meredith Roossinck first uploaded her wedding photo onto the breast cancer awareness website www.paintitpinkcanada.com, she had no idea the impact it would soon have.

This past September, Roossinck and her husband Bryan celebrated their wedding day in unique style aboard a dragon boat and with good reason: The young woman was diagnosed with breast cancer at just 22 years of age - a time when most individuals are planning for the future, not battling an illness. Roossinck's life had already been touched by cancer before, when she lost both her mother and father to the disease.

Seeking support during such a challenging time, Roossinck joined the Women Alike Abreast A River Dragon Boat team - A group of local breast cancer survivors. What Roossinck found was more than a support group; she found a sisterhood and a way to help others by raising awareness and funds for the disease.

When asked to describe the wedding photo she submitted for the Paint it Pink campaign, Roossinck, now 25, said "We decided to ride down the river as a way to include my team members (my 20+ mothers and grandmothers) in our wedding day. It was also a way to create awareness within our community and to give hope to others."

Meredith's inspiring photo and touching personal story prompted Avon Canada - the creators of the Paint it Pink website to announce plans to award over $30,000 to dragon boat teams across Canada who participated in the initiative. The news came following Avon's recent Paint it Pink breast cancer awareness campaign - a nationwide initiative that invited the general public to send a message of hope and share expressions of pink via photos uploaded to Avon's Paint it Pink website www.paintitpinkcanada.com. Once there, participants were given the opportunity to nominate a breast cancer charity of their choice to be considered for funding. While the Paint it Pink campaign has since come to a close, the photo gallery is still active and features Roossinck's photo for all to see.

To date, Roossinck's dragon boat team 'Women Alike Abreast A River' have donated to local breast cancer charities, as well as purchased an Oxygen Concentrator (in memory of one of the team's paddlers), Biopsy and Spot Imaging Equipment for the Aberdeen Regional Hospital of New Glasgow, Nova Scotia and have also contributed to the building of the hospital's new Palliative Care Unit.

"It's stories like this that echo what the Paint it Pink campaign is all about - individuals making a difference in their community," says Robert Lacey, Avon Canada's Director of Communications & Events. "While Roossinck's story is local, we want its awareness and impact to be national, as a show of inspiration to others."

As a result, Avon Canada plans to donate a portion of its Paint it Pink funds to Women Alike Abreast A River of New Glasgow, Nova Scotia, as well as to the following Dragon Boat teams who participated in the "Paint it Pink" campaign, including: Survivorship of Penticton, BC, Abreast of 'bridge of Lethbridge, AB, as well as Breast Buddies of Sarnia, Wonder Broads of Windsor, Dragon Tamers of Kenora and Survivors Abreast of Peterborough, Ontario.

Avon Breast Cancer Crusade

To date, Avon Canada has raised and donated over $16 million dollars to breast cancer, making Avon the largest corporate contributor to breast cancer research in the country. Internationally, the Avon Breast Cancer Crusade has raised and awarded over $600 million in 50 countries for awareness and education; screening and diagnosis; access to treatment; support services; and scientific research.

About Avon

Avon is the world's largest direct seller, marketing to women in more than 100 countries through 5.5 million independent Avon Sales Representatives. Avon's product line includes beauty products, fashion jewelry and apparel, and features such well-recognized brand names as Avon Color, Anew, Skin-So-Soft, Advance Techniques, Avon Naturals, and Mark. Learn more about Avon and its products at www.avon.ca.

/NOTE TO PHOTO EDITORS: A photo accompanying this release is available at http://photos.newswire.ca. Images are free to accredited members of the media/

SOURCE Avon Canada

For further information: For further information: Elizabeth Munro, Avon Canada, Public Relations & Communications, (514) 630-8305, elizabeth.munro@avon.com

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