Remember how worried we were that all of our computers would crash when we welcomed in the year 2000?Â Now, a decade later, donâ€™t those concerns seem so, well, last century as we find ourselves spending more time than we could ever have imagined online, wirelessly updating our Facebook status, tweeting on Twitter, and blogging about what we are doing.
It was all that typing that got me to thinking: How could we use the Internet to change the face of breast cancer research?
As you know, my first idea was the Love/Avon Army of Women, which we launched in 2008 with a generous grant from the Avon Foundation for Women. The Army of Women offered a revolutionary new Internet-based opportunity for women to partner with research scientists to move breast cancer beyond a cureâ€”and, in response, more than 325,000 women have already said, â€œYes! Sign Me Up!â€
A few months later, the Army of Womenâ€™s success got me to thinking: What if we could enroll millions of women in an online breast cancer study? Well, that kernel of an idea has come to fruition, and I am thrilled to tell you that 2010 is getting off to an amazing start with our launch of the groundbreaking Health of Women Study (HOW)â€”the largest-ever study designed to tell us HOW breast cancer starts and HOW to prevent it! What makes the HOW Study unique:
- It is open to you and to every woman you know.
- Itâ€™s open to all womenâ€”those who have had breast cancer and those who have not.
- You donâ€™t have to leave your house to participate. The HOW Study has harnessed the power of the Web and will be done completely on-line!
- We will be tracking you and everyone else over a period of time
- You will have an opportunity to submit the questions you want to see answered!
How can you enroll in the HOW Study? Become a member of the Army of Women. (If you are a member, you should already have received your HOW Study invite) Then, go to www.armyofwomen.org/how and sign in with your Army of Women username and password.Â Once signed in, you will be redirected to the HOW Study site, where you will be asked to create a new account for the HOW Study.
Remember, the HOW Study not only is for every woman; it needs every womanâ€™s support. So, the next time you are with friends or family members who are talking about how much we still need to learn about breast cancer and what we can do to end this disease, speak up and tell them â€œHOW!â€