Where Has Avon’s Breast Cancer Support Been Going Lately?

There are hundreds of corporate funders on the national grantmaking scene, but did you know that the Avon Foundation for Women is the largest corporate-affiliated foundation that focuses on women’s causes? Between its founding in 1955 and last year, Avon’s philanthropy contributed nearly a billion dollars.

In the realm of breast cancer prevention, research, treatment, and cures, Avon has been on the scene since 1992. Let’s take a closer look at Avon’s breast cancer funding.

The Avon Foundation recently awarded a $75,000 grant to Northern Westchester Hospital in New York to support the hospital’s Breast Health Initiative for Underserved Women. This is representative of Avon’s support: Access to care is a top priority, as is support for low-income, uninsured and underinsured women. With this grant, the hospital will provide free breast health services in the form of education, risk assessment, treatment and follow-up.

“The mission of the Breast Health Initiative is closely aligned with our core mission, which is to promote and aid charitable, scientific, educational, and humanitarian activities, with a special emphasis on activities that improve the lives of women and their families,” said Carolyn Ricci, program director of the Avon Breast Cancer Crusade. “Collectively, we need to ensure that women who do not have the financial means or health insurance still receive high-quality healthcare.”

In Marin County, California, since 2007, Avon has given at least $1.3 million to groups active in the cause, including the Marin Women’s Study, which collected mammographic data and saliva-based DNA samples from thousands of Marin women. You can view a list of recent grants by state or year on the foundation’s Grant Database.

In 2014, here’s how Avon's breast cancer funding broke down: 

  • $3.5 million to research and patient care.
  • $4.745 million to direct clinical care/safety net hospitals/patient navigation.
  • $1.01 million to metastatic breast cancer.
  • $2.329 million for public education/outreach/advocacy.
  • $4.096 million to research. 

The next letter of intent deadline is January 8, 2016, which applies to all regions. Avon defines five distinct geographic regions, and each has its own set of application deadlines. They are Chicago/Houston/D.C.; Boston/San Francisco; Los Angeles/Santa Barbara; New York City, and a national pool with all other U.S. cities.

Past Avon funding has reached nearly every one of the 50 states, although California and New York see a lot of the funder’s support from year to year. In total, the Avon Foundation committed over $18 million to breast cancer funding last year.

To learn more about this funder, check out IP’s full profile, Avon Foundation for Women: Grants for Disease.