REGION — The sixth annual Bike for Boobs ride on Oct. 14 in San Diego will raise funds for an Encinitas-based charity called Shades of Pink Foundation California, which supports local women with breast cancer who struggle financially in the wake of their diagnosis and treatment.
Knowing how important it was to have a network of support as well as the financial resources required to fight breast cancer, survivor Sandy Hanshaw, founder of Bike for Boobs and owner of The Wine Pub and Coffee Hub & Café in Point Loma, decided to make Shades of Pink Foundation California this year’s beneficiary.
“Receiving the devastating news that you’re fighting for your life is dire and the financial strain treatment puts on families only adds to the devastation,” Hanshaw said. “The money raised at this year’s event is making a local impact and ensuring our neighbors are getting financial support to continue to pay rent and put food on the table while receiving treatment.”
Vembra Holnagel, president of Shades of Pink Foundation California, explained that the all-volunteer organization provides low-income women with funds that help them weather the financial strains that follow a breast-cancer diagnosis.
Holnagel said that more than 50 percent of the grant recipients are heads of their household. Many make low wages and don’t receive paid sick leave from work. The funding they are provided, at $2,000 per recipient, helps to cover basic living expenses like housing and transportation.
For the Bike for Boobs event on Sunday, Oct. 14, participants are asked to dress in pink and choose the bike ride that best fits their fitness and interest level. A leisurely group ride around Shelter Island will kick off at 3 p.m., while a 20-mile ride around Fiesta, Shelter and Harbor Islands will commence at 2 p.m.
All participants are invited back to The Wine Pub for live music, drinks, tapas, a raffle and more. The suggested donation is $25. To date, Bike for Boobs has raised more than $35,000 for breast cancer organizations.
Hanshaw has been cancer-free for five years after a battle with stage-three breast cancer. She discovered a lump in her breast mere months after receiving a normal mammogram. Hanshaw said that after what can be the “doom and gloom” of a cancer fight, the bike ride and overall event provide encouragement.
“You see what life can be like,” Hanshaw said, noting, “You come out of cancer with a much bigger appreciation for life.”