BRCA gene testing-based breast and ovarian cancer keynote speaker, advocate, adviser and ‘previvor,’ Merilee Kern, announced last week on July 23, the launch of the “BRCA Believer” shirt and merchandise line. The line is intended to generate awareness for BRCA genetic testing as well as support for the breast and ovarian cancer community. According to Kern the line is meant to ‘meet an advocacy need specific to individuals and families impacted by a genetic predisposition to these conditions’.
‘The mission of the BRCA Believer line is to raise awareness about the availability of, and accessibility to, genetic testing as it relates to hereditary breast and ovarian cancer, about the implications of being BRCA gene positive, about the extraordinary power of choice that accompanies a BRCA positive diagnosis, and the importance of celebrating and uplifting those who have made brave, difficult decisions in relation,’ notes Kern. ‘Far too many of those who have taken heroic and life-changing measures relating to a BRCA-positive status do so in relative privacy and seclusion, never benefiting from the level recognition and praise they deserve amid a circumstance few understand. Through the BRCA Believer line, I hope to enrich the BRCA-positive community with an overarching sense of pride and achievement while simultaneously educating and raising social consciousness regarding the significance, availability and implications of genetic testing for hereditary breast and ovarian cancer.’
Kern herself is BRCA-positive and developed the BRCA Believer line in an effort to inspire, uplift and empower others who are hereditary breast and/or ovarian cancer survivors high-risk ‘previvors’, a survivors of a genetic predisposition to cancer who opt for preventative surgeries. Kern has not only undergone a double mastectomy but also bilateral oophorectomy and a hysterectomy to thwart off a cancer diagnosis. In conjunction with Ripple Junction (one of the largest and most successful purveyors of licensed entertainment and pop culture apparel in the world), the BRCA Believers line is all abut bringing about a much needed awareness regarding all the options individuals have for fighting and even trying to thwart off hereditary breast and ovarian cancer. Said Neil Hoynes, CEO of Ripple Junction: ‘We applaud Merilee Kern’s efforts, as the founder of this line, to leverage fashion and style as a way to drive greater visibility for the multitude of life-preserving measures available with respect to these inherited gene-based cancers.’
The BRCA Believer line is an online store that offers women’s, men’s and children’s shirts, tank tops and hoodies, mugs, cards, wall decals, magnets and other items all featuring unique and inspirational designs. With each purchase a portion of the proceeds are donated to nonprofit organization(s) dedicated to fighting hereditary breast and ovarian cancer. There are various designs to choose from like breast cancer pink, ovarian cancer teal, cancer lavender or just basic black and inspirational messages like ‘Destiny by Decision’ and ‘Alive by Choice Not Chance’. Prices range from $6.49 for a bumper sticker up to $52.99 for footed pajamas. Tanks and tees range from$18.99 to $27.99 for a hoodie. To learn more or to purchase visit www.BRCABeliever.com.