Local Breast Cancer Fundraiser Organized by Lawrenceville Teen

Olivia and Chelsi Meyerson

The public is invited to a special event to support breast cancer research on Saturday, May 5 from 6pm to 9pm at the Carnegie Center Café, 506 Carnegie Center, Princeton, NJ. Protect Your Girls—Invisible Genes is a fundraiser to support the Basser Center for breast cancer research at the University of Pennsylvania.

The event is being organized by 14 year old Olivia Meyerson of Lawrenceville, NJ and her brother Mason, 12, to bring awareness to BRCA-related cancers through creative means as well as to raise money to benefit The Basser Center, for research and to find a cure. Tickets to the event cost $20 for guests under 21 and $30 for guests 21 and up and can be purchased here: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/protect-your-girls-invisible-genes-tickets-43941902413

“This is a fundraiser to raise awareness and fund research about a gene mutation that causes many types of cancer called the BRCA gene,” said Olivia Meyerson.

Ticket proceeds will go the Basser Center established by the University of Pennsylvania. Mindy Basser and Jon Gray have donated $55 million dollars to find a cure for the mutation. This center, which began in 2012, is the first center for the research, treatment, and prevention of BRCA gene mutation-related cancers. These mutations are hereditary, affect both men and women, and form a lifetime increased risk for breast, ovarian, pancreatic, prostate, and melanoma cancers. A person with this mutation is 89% more likely to develop breast cancer, and 70% more likely to develop ovarian cancer.

The Basser Center has made two promises. One is to create a blood test to discover pancreatic cancer. The other promise is a vaccine to stop BRCA gene mutation-related cancers. The Center provides access, education, research, innovation, and most of all hope. With our help they have the potential to cure BRCA gene mutation cancers. There will be music, food, an auction, raffle baskets, and more at the event. All (adults as well as children) are welcome and invited.

“I am so proud of Olivia for shedding light on this important issue,” said Olivia’s mother, Chelsi Meyerson. “I am proud that she is empowered to stand up and help other girls who might be worried about their genetic dispositions. I am also sad that this is a worry in her life.

My own mother died from ovarian cancer when I was twelve and my sister was ten. She fought hard for four years while she was constantly in and out of the hospital and underwent surgery after surgery. It was devastating to watch and ultimately left us motherless at a very young age.

Every woman in my family, from my mother’s generation and back, had either breast or ovarian cancer. Nine years ago, I had BRCA genetic testing, to determine my predisposition for developing these hereditary cancers (breast and ovarian). My testing was positive, but I had choices that my mother did not have. I had knowledge that my mother did not have. I felt empowered to make the decision to go through numerous surgeries to ensure my health and my future. I felt lucky to have that choice that my mother, my grandmother, and my great aunts did not have. While I am incredibly lucky and grateful to have the knowledge and choices that generations before me didn’t have, I want better knowledge and choices for my children.”

The Basser Center for BRCA is the first comprehensive center for the research, treatment, and prevention of BRCA-related cancers. The Center is focused on groundbreaking research, including the promise of a vaccine to prevent BRCA-related cancers. Our goal through this event is to bring awareness of PREVENTATIVE measures. We want to encourage people to become aware of their background and genetics in order to be empowered for their future. Through my journey and by telling my story, I personally know several women who have been tested, who didn’t previously know that they needed to or that they were at risk. One of them tested positive for a BRCA mutation and now takes prophylactic measures to save her future. Awareness is key!

So while it is a private thing to go through, we feel compelled to shout it out and try to save more lives.”

You can support this incredible event on May 5 from 6:00-9:00 p.m. at 506 Carnegie Center. Please share the Meyersons’ story and help save lives. Buy a ticket to the event, or make a donation if you can. Spread the word!

For more information, go to the website (built by Olivia) at www.protectyourgirls-invisiblegenes.com. Tickets to the event cost $20 for guests under 21 and $30 for guests 21 and up and can be purchased here: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/protect-your-girls-invisible-genes-tickets-43941902413

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