The month of October has become an important time of the year for breast cancer charities to raise funds. While most of us presumably are “aware” by now, one excellent way to actually do something about breast cancer is to donate to a reputable charity.
And if you’re considering a donation, now or any time, the best way to go is to give directly to a worthy charity.
There are lots of excellent breast cancer charities and cancer research charities to choose from. I’ve written about some of the best national breast cancer charities in this post.
What if you want to make a donation that’s specifically for research? This is a cause that’s near and dear to my heart as I believe it is research–the right kind of research–that is going to help us make more progress against this disease.
When donating to cancer research charities, we need to be aware of how the organizations use the funds they raise. Some nationally known nonprofits that fund cancer research actually spend a major portion of their funds on activities that are not research-related. As a result, donating to those groups can mean that only a fraction of our donation actually goes to research.
Here are six highly-rated national charities that primarily engage in cancer research. Three of the organizations focus on breast cancer research and the other three each have unique approaches to cancer research in general, including breast cancer research.
I’ve included brief summaries of each organization and links to my full reviews.
Breast Cancer Research
DSLRF has as its focus going beyond looking for a cure to identifying how breast cancer begins and how it can be prevented. One of its projects, the Army of Women, was established by Dr. Susan Love as a way to bring together women who are interested in participating in research studies with scientists working to figure out what causes breast cancer and how to prevent it. DSLRF has a 3-star rating from Charity Navigator. 83% of its total expenses go to its programs.
You can read my review of the Dr. Susan Love Research Foundation here.
BCRF says that its mission is “to prevent and cure breast cancer by advancing the world’s most promising research.” It seeks to carry out this mission by providing grants to researchers for studies that have the potential for rapid application in the clinic. BCRF has also established a separate Founders Fund, an international effort focused specifically on improving understanding of the biology of breast cancer metastasis. BCRF has a 3-star rating from Charity Navigator. 85% of its total expenses go to its programs.
You can read my review of the Breast Cancer Research Foundation here.
METAvivor is dedicated to the specific fight of women and men living with stage 4 metastatic breast cancer. The organization funds research to help improve the longevity and quality of life for metastatic breast cancer patients. METAvivor reported that in 2021 it awarded 26 research grants totaling $4 million. METAvivor has a 4-star rating from Charity Navigator. 96% of its total expenses (and 100% of donations) go to its programs.
You can read my review of METAvivor here.
General Cancer Research
Stand Up To Cancer was founded by members of the entertainment industry who wanted to see more rapid progress made in translating knowledge about the biology of cancer into new treatments. SU2C creates “dream teams” of scientists, clinicians and other experts as well as patient advocates to work on finding solutions to critical problems in cancer diagnosis, treatment and prevention. SU2C is under the umbrella of the Entertainment Industry Foundation, which has a 4-star rating from Charity Navigator. 85% of its total expenses (and 100% of donations to SU2C) go to its programs.
You can read my review of Stand Up To Cancer here.
The Hope Foundation and its partnering organization, the SWOG Cancer Research Network, are focused on improving the care cancer patients receive and improving quality of life for cancer survivors. The Hope Foundation provides about $7 million annually toward SWOG clinical trials research in lung, breast, gastrointestinal and prostate cancers, as well as melanoma, leukemia and other types of cancer. The Hope Foundation has a 4-star rating from Charity Navigator. 87% of its total expenses go to its programs.
You can read my review of The Hope Foundation for Cancer Research here.
The Cancer Research Institute has been working to develop effective immune system treatments for cancer for over 50 years. CRI funds basic science, translational and clinical research studies in cancer immunology at leading academic institutions in the United States and globally. The Cancer Research Institute has a 4-star rating from Charity Navigator. 87% of its total expenses go to its programs.
You can read my review of the Cancer Research Institute here.
I hope this post has given you some ideas for cancer research charities that you might want to take a closer look at.
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Supporting Breast Cancer Charities: A Better Way
Making a Difference: Contributing to Cancer Charities
Donating for Cancer Research: Choosing Value
Contributing to Breast Cancer Charities
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