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Power Of Pink Cheque Handover

Covid 19 brought out the best in South Africans. Together we raised a record amount for breast cancer survivors in the Power of Pink campaign.

In October last year I shared with you the launch of the Power of Pink campaign and encouraged you to join the movement and buy mushrooms in pink punnets.

 

Power of Pink Campaign

Despite a pandemic, lockdowns and financial hardships in the year of Covid-19, South Africans have very generously contributed a record R692 784 for Reach for Recovery’s Ditto Project.  It is the highest amount raised since the project’s inception in 2010.

The money comes from the Power of Pink campaign, which is the sale of fresh mushrooms in pink punnets at Pick n Pay stores every October. R1 from each punnet goes to Reach for Recovery, which provides silicone breast prostheses to breast cancer survivors who cannot afford breast reconstruction after a mastectomy.

Since 2011, a total of 7 298 silicone prostheses, costing more than R5,2 million, have been given to women who could not afford them, with the Power of Pink campaign contributing 96 percent of the total project spend.

“One of the many tragedies of breast cancer is that so many women live without breasts after a mastectomy. Their basic financial constraints do not give them the wherewithal to acquire prostheses that will enable them to live more dignified and happier lives,” explains South African Mushroom Farmers’ Association (SAMFA) chairperson, Ross Richardson. “Most South African’s don’t even know it is an issue, filled with heartbreak for many breast cancer survivors.”

Fresh mushrooms have been linked to the fight against breast cancer since 2010, when the Beckman Institute at the City of Hope Cancer Centre in California found that eating just 10g of mushrooms a day more than halved the risk of developing breast cancer.

Power of Pink
Photography by Jeremy Glyn for SAMFA/RGC in February 2021
SAMFA Power of Pink cheque handover 2021.

 

“The generosity of South Africans in supporting this cause is astonishing,” says Stephné Jacobs, national chairperson of Reach for Recovery, the non-profit organisation that runs the Ditto Project to provide free silicone prostheses to breast cancer survivors. “We aim to provide emotional and practical support to every breast cancer patient who needs it,” she notes.

Much like Tennessee Williams’ Blanche DuBois in A Streetcar Named Desire, these patients have “always depended on the kindness of strangers,” and 2020 has proved how truly kind and generous South Africans are by nature.

“Every woman should have access to this essential support service,” says Stephné. “It is free of charge, and anyone can refer a patient for support.”

Lockdowns and Covid-19 transmission protocols have temporarily suspended Reach for Recovery’s prostheses fitting services as “cancer patients and survivors are too vulnerable to be put into situations where they could be at risk of contracting the Covid-19 virus”, but the proceeds from the 2020 Power of Pink campaign have been set aside for use as soon as regulations allow.

As a stop-gap solution during the pandemic, to aid with recovery, dignity and self-image, breast cancer patients have been given beaded softies until they can be fitted with their own silicone prostheses.

After all, as author Robin Hobb writes, “There are few things so tender as a (wo)man’s dignity.”

 

Mushroom Grain Bowls With Green Goddess Dressing

In the spirit of the Power of Pink campaign, we are celebrating the generosity and the goddess in women with this recipe.

Power of Pink

Mushroom Grain Bowls With Green Goddess Dressing

Course Salad
Servings 4

Ingredients
  

For the dressing

  • 1 cup plain Greek yoghurt
  • 1 cup packed fresh herbs chives, coriander, parsley and dill work well together
  • ¼ cup spring onions chopped
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 small clove garlic roughly chopped
  • pinch sea salt flakes
  • freshly ground black pepper

For the pickled cauliflower

  • 300 g cauliflower florets
  • 1 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tbsp sea salt flakes
  • 1 tbsp sugar

For the bowls

  • 4 cups mixed grains farro, spelt, barley and wild rice work very well together
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic finely minced
  • 500 g mixed mushrooms white buttons, porabellinis and baby buttons
  • 170 g fresh asparagus spears very lightly blanched
  • 110 g edamame beans shelled
  • zest and juice of 1 lemon
  • ½ cup spring onions thinly sliced
  • fennel fronds or fresh dill to serve
  • salt and pepper to taste

Instructions
 

For the dressing

  • Combine all the ingredients in a blender, food processor, or nutribullet.
  • Process until smooth, adding a splash of ice cold water to thin it out until desired consistency.
  • Taste, to adjust salt and pepper.
  • Scrape into a jar and keep in the fridge until needed.

For the pickled cauliflower

  • Combine vinegar, water, salt and sugar in a small saucepan and bring to the boil.
  • Slice off the pretty top bits of the cauliflower florets and discard the thick stems. Save the stems for later and use in soup or stir fry!
  • Add trimmed cauliflower to a heat-proof jar or bowl.
  • Pour over the pickling liquid and allow to cool.
  • Place in the fridge until ready to serve.

For the bowls

  • Heat oil and butter in a large frying pan over medium-high heat.
  • Add garlic and cook until fragrant. Add mushrooms and cook, tossing them often until just tender and golden brown. Then season.
  • In a large mixing bowl add the grains, mushrooms, asparagus spears, edamame beans, lemon zest, lemon juice and spring onions. Toss together.
  • Spoon into bowls and scatter over some pickled cauliflower.
  • Top with fennel fronds or dill and finally a generous drizzle of green goddess dressing.

Notes

For a low-carb version omit the grains and serve on a bed of mixed herbs and lettuce.
Keyword mushroom, mushroom salad, mushrooms, salad

You can read more about the Power of Pink campaign HERE or try more mushrooms recipes HERE.

 

Happy cooking!

Candice

 

DISCLAIMER: This was sponsored by The South African Mushroom Farmers’ Association. The South African Mushroom Farmers’ Association provided me with this recipe and associated image. All thoughts and opinions expressed herein are my own and not influenced by the developing company, and/or its affiliates, in any way. The fact is, I’m crazy about mushrooms, and want to shout it from the rooftops anyway.

SOURCES

Beckman Institute at the City of Hope Cancer Centre, University of Australia, Sydney, Zhejiang University in China

Mushrooms May Help Cut Breast Cancer Risks, Choice Cancer Care 

Dietary mushroom intake and the risk of breast cancer based on hormone receptor status, PubMed.com

 

 

 

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