The events of the past two weeks surrounding Komen's funding decisions have been challenging and disappointing to all of us. From the very outset, the Board and staff at Komen Greater NYC were not in support of the original decision made by the national Komen organization. However, we believed strongly in the importance of working together as one organization to correct the mistakes, rather than fragmenting the organization in order to distance ourselves from them. We worked behind-the-scenes very closely with the senior leadership at National Headquarters to effect a reversal of the policy.
Much has been said and written in the media about these events. However, sadly, very little if anything has been said about the tens of thousands of underserved and already disenfranchised women and families who will suffer most as a result of this unfortunate chain of events if we lose valuable supporters like you as a result.
We are writing to assure you that, despite the recent controversy, our focus at Komen Greater NYC has not changed. It is important for you to know that Komen Greater NYC has been and continues to be dedicated to serving the breast health needs of all women, men and families regardless of age, race, gender or socioeconomic status. Our top priority is to continue to fund local programs with the best outcomes and greatest community impact. We will continue to do this, as we have for over 20 years, by working in collaboration with excellent direct service providers and demonstrating role model performance that has earned and still deserves your trust and loyalty.
Currently, Komen Greater NYC provides $3.3 million in funding to 36 local programs and three hospitals throughout the greater New York City area, all of which specifically assist uninsured/underinsured women with screenings and support services. We currently provide funding to Planned Parenthood of Nassau County to make breast health services available to uninsured minority women on Long Island. We anticipate they will maintain the high-quality breast health services and support that our Affiliate has funded for the past seven years and, as such, we will continue to support their efforts. At Komen Greater NYC, we select and fund our grant programs based on the specific needs identified in our Community Profile.
Thanks to you, our supporters, the impact of the Greater New York City Affiliate of Susan G. Komen for the Cure has grown significantly over the last 22 years, from $15,000 in local community-based breast health grants in 1992 to $3.3 million today.
There is no other organization in our area that does what we do on a grassroots local level. We are able to do it because of your support. Please don't let politics interfere with the needs of our own communities. Let's do what's best for greater metropolitan New Yorkers who need the breast health education, screening, services and support that we at Komen Greater NYC provide.
We hope we can continue to count on your support for Komen Greater NYC so that we may get closer to achieving a vision that resonates with all of us: a world without breast cancer.
With warmest regards,
Dara P. Richardson-Heron, MD
Chief Executive Officer
Komen Greater NYC
Komen Greater NYC Board of Directors