Comparing Top 7 Breast Cancer Charities

When you or your company donate to a breast cancer charity, you can impact lives, support treatment, and create hope. Donations of all sizes can make a difference and help both individuals and the nonprofits that focus on breast cancer awareness, care, and prevention. Further, donors and partners today enjoy a wealth of options when it comes to outstanding, dedicated breast cancer nonprofits.

What is the best breast cancer charity to donate to?

“Where should I donate?” is one of the most common questions Googled on the topic of breast cancer, but the answer is not simple. One big misconception is that all breast cancer charities are the same. Another misconception is that there is one large umbrella organization calling the shots.

In reality, there are several large national organizations that have built trust over many decades and impact the lives of millions. These are the organizations with the brands and names you may recognize—American Cancer Society, Breastcancer.org, Breast Cancer Research Foundation, Living Beyond Breast Cancer, National Breast Cancer Foundation, Susan G. Komen Foundation, and Young Survival Coalition.

There are also many grassroots organizations that specifically focus on impacting their local communities. These smaller breast cancer charities may provide excellent support locally, but their brand recognition or impact may not extend beyond their community.

Each breast cancer organization has its own mission, visions, goals, and ideas about how to impact the lives of people affected by breast cancer. This is why research is crucial when you’re making a donation.

When selecting a breast cancer charity to identify with or support, it’s important to choose one that’s right for you (or your company) and aligns with your goals, and maybe even your own personality.

Here are a few of the top breast cancer charities, what they do, and what makes them unique: (listed in alphabetical order)

American Cancer Society

Founded in 1913, American Cancer Society (ACS) is the oldest and largest cancer organization in the United States. Its mission is to save lives, celebrate lives, and lead the fight for a world without cancer. Though ACS supports all cancer types, their decades-long work in breast cancer is noteworthy. ACS has funded billions in cancer research, and helped launch life-saving breakthroughs that have impacted millions of breast cancer patients. ACS supports breast cancer patients by providing:

  • Rides to treatment
  • Lodging during treatment
  • Breast cancer support
  • Hair loss and mastectomy products

American Cancer Society’s notable history sets them apart. Over the decades, ACS has funded dozens of Nobel Prize laureates, including James D. Watson, whose work led to the discovery of the double-helix structure of DNA.

Breastcancer.org

Breastcancer.org is dedicated to providing information and community to those touched by this disease. Breastcancer.org was founded in 2000 for breast cancer patients who needed more information and support than a doctor’s visit could provide. Breastcancer.org hosts the world’s largest breast cancer peer community and has reached hundreds of millions of people worldwide. Breastcancer.org’s website helps patients understand breast cancer:

  • Symptoms and diagnosis
  • Treatment and side effects
  • Day-to-day matters
  • Risk of diagnosis or recurrence

Breastcancer.org publishes peer-reviewed summary articles that help explain the latest in breast cancer research. 

Breast Cancer Research Foundation

Founded in 1993 by Evelyn Lauder, Breast Cancer Research Foundation’s (BCRF) mission is to prevent and cure breast cancer by advancing the world’s most promising research. BCRF is the largest breast cancer charity in the country dedicated solely to supporting research. They currently fund 275 researchers focused on specific areas of breast cancer as a complex disease, including:

  • Heredity and ethnicity
  • Lifestyle and prevention
  • Metastasis
  • Survivorship
  • Treatment
  • Tumor biology

In 2018, BCRF-funded researchers completed the 10-year TAILORx trial, which helped thousands of early-stage breast cancer patients avoid the use of chemotherapy treatment.

Living Beyond Breast Cancer

Living Beyond Breast Cancer is a national nonprofit that connects people with trusted information and a community of support. Dr. Marisa C. Weiss, a radiation oncologist, founded Living Beyond Breast Cancer in 1991 in response to a lack of resources and support for her patients. Today, hundreds of thousands of people turn to Living Beyond Breast Cancer for trusted information, connection, and support. Living Beyond Breast Cancer offers multiple points of contact for patients, through: 

  • Educational conferences
  • “Ask-the-Expert” sessions
  • Videos focusing on patient’s concerns and questions

Living Beyond Breast Cancer’s Breast Cancer Helpline connects patients in need with trained volunteers for emotional support, guidance, and hope. Patients can be matched with trained volunteers with similar breast cancer experiences based on type, stage, age, or area of concern. 

National Breast Cancer Foundation

National Breast Cancer Foundation’s (NBCF) mission is to help women now by providing help and inspiring hope to those affected by breast cancer through early detection, education, and support services. Founded in 1991 by breast cancer survivor Janelle Hail, NBCF envisions a world where no one will navigate breast cancer alone. NBCF has provided over a million free mammograms, early detection, and patient navigation services to uninsured patients and those in need of financial assistance. Their programs include:

  • National Mammography Program
  • Patient Navigator Program
  • HOPE Kit
  • Metastatic breast cancer retreats and support groups
  • Breast health education

After hearing the concerns of metastatic patients, NBCF recently launched a metastatic retreat program for Stage IV breast cancer patients and their caregivers. During the retreats, patients and caregivers receive oncology consultations, end-of-life preparations, and thorough examination of patient’s hopes and fears.

Susan G. Komen Foundation

In 1980, Nancy Brinker promised her dying sister, Susan Komen, that she would do everything she could to end breast cancer. Brinker started Susan G. Komen Foundation in 1982, and it is now the largest breast cancer organization in the United States. Komen’s mission is to eradicate breast cancer as a life-threatening disease by advancing research, education, screening, and treatment. Komen invests in programs that offer breast cancer patients a comprehensive approach to fighting the disease with a focus on:

  • Patient advocacy
  • Research
  • Equal access to high-quality care
  • Patient support
  • Education

Komen recently launched the African-American Health Equity Initiative with the goal to reduce disparities in the breast cancer mortality rate.

Young Survival Coalition

In 1998, a group of young (under 40) breast cancer survivors founded Young Survival Coalition (YSC) to address the unique challenges they faced. YSC strengthens the community, addresses its unique needs, amplifies younger voices, and improves the quality of life of young adults affected by breast cancer. YSC’s programs address topics that young adults diagnosed with breast cancer face, such as:

  • Aggressive forms of cancer in young adults
  • Lack of research
  • Financial challenges
  • Body image
  • Fertility

YSC’s National Summit is the largest annual gathering of young breast cancer survivors. Featuring inspirational speakers, the conference allows young patients to attend workshops that address their unique needs and connect with others in their community. 

Donating with confidence

No matter which of the above breast cancer charities you or your company select, you can be confident that you are making a good decision and one that can improve lives. If you choose to donate to a smaller, local organization, do some research ahead of time to ensure the organization aligns with your goals and values.

In summary, here is a review of several key breast cancer charities:

American Cancer Society – Provides research and help in the effort to end all cancers

Breastcancer.org – Helps readers understand the complexities of breast health and breast cancer 

Breast Cancer Research Foundation – Focuses entirely on breast cancer research to fuel their mission of preventing and curing all breast cancer

Living Beyond Breast Cancer – Connects those impacted by breast cancer to information and a community of support

National Breast Cancer Foundation – Delivers help and hope when those affected by breast cancer need it most—now 

Susan G. Komen Foundation – Addresses breast cancer on various fronts to fund their mission of eradicating breast cancer

Young Survivor Coalition – Offers the largest community and resources for survivors under the age of 40


Interested in learning more about National Breast Cancer Foundation?

6 Comments

  1. I receive daily a recorded solicitation from “breast cancer relief committee” wanting donation commitment when they send donation request… I have repeatedly declined and demanded no more calls….because it is a recording my message goes nowhere, I am and most other older and younger people are besieged with scam and unwanted calls like this one. Thus we now refuse any telephone solicitations. Thus I hope you can track this scam down and expose it. or at least end the calls to me. Current number they are using is 888 847 0796. If they are in fact a worthy charity then stop the calls to me and others on the no call lists !
    Stan

    • Thanks for bringing this to our attention, Stan. NBCF does not solicit donations through phone calls, and we would suggest to report the business calling to Better Business Bureau. Then block the number from your phone. Hope this helps you and others.

  2. I had breast cancer in 2008, and was able to interact with the Komen charity locally. What a disappointment! All I heard was how to donate money to them, how the charity began, and then was handed a pen and sent on my way. I’ve heard so many individual stories of inconsiderate comments, and non-interaction from Komen groups. I will never donate to them, or any company associated with them. They donate only 20% of all funds raised to research. Please omit them from your group.

  3. My girl got stage 3 her 2 positive breast cancer. I would like to ask if there’s another way or treatment for her without surgery… Coz I don’t want her to feel that she’s incomplete if ever they remove parts of her body.. I know it’s very hard to accept but that’s reality… Pls if anyone here in knows or got knowledge to cure that without surgery thanks so much

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