Kevin Connolly Fights for Women's Health
By Keving Connolly
Kevin Connolly and Noreen Fraser
As an actor in a comedy series, I am often called upon to lighten up a scene or lend a wisecrack to deliver a punch line. I have a serious side, though. One issue I take very seriously is cancer. Cancer is the number-one killer in our country. Every day 1,500 people die of cancer, and the cost of treatment is a drain on our economy. It makes perfect sense to me that we have to put a more concentrated effort into preventing this disease.
After having lost my father to lung cancer in 1991 and my mother to gallbladder cancer in March of this year, I understand the devastation caused by cancer in a very real and personal way. I also appreciate how far cancer research has come, but acknowledge how far it has to go.
With Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month (September) and Breast Cancer Awareness Month (October) having just passed, I was reminded of the importance of women’s cancers and how they affect everyone. I joined the Noreen Fraser Foundation Men for Women Now initiative to help support the fight. Men for Women Now (MFWN) is a campaign that highlights the importance of prevention and early detection of women’s cancers and raises funds for groundbreaking women’s cancer research. What I love about the campaign is that men are asked to reach out to the women in their lives and put a little pressure on them to get their mammograms and Pap smears. No one is busier than a mom, and that is often the excuse for not getting annual exams—an excuse that isn’t quite good enough!
The campaign uses humor to highlight a typically humorless topic. I shot a fun PSA to support the MFWN and SocialVibe fund-raising campaign on Facebook, which I affectionately refer to as “Boob-Book.” You can see the message and videos by other MFWN supporters, including Jack Black, Zach Galifianakis and Bob Saget, at noreenfraserfoundation.org. The Noreen Fraser Foundation and SocialVibe Facebook campaign for MFWN allow people to help fund women’s cancer research without having to reach into their wallets. The need for research dollars doesn’t slow during a recession, so it was nice to be a part of something that allows everyone to participate, regardless of income.
It’s been an honor to be part of this funny and original campaign. Humor always has a way of making its point, and this campaign is spot-on. I hope everyone who reads this article takes with them the urgency for early detection and prevention of all cancers. Life is a gift and giving is a privilege.
PHOTOGRAPH BY MARTINA GEMMOLA