Race for the Cure participation declines again

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This year's Komen Race for the Cure in Indianapolis fell to 21,380 participants—a 22-percent drop from a year ago—a top organizer said Monday.

Susan G. Komen organizers told IBJ earlier this month that they hoped a late rush would help them match last year's participation of about 27,000. But Executive Director Dana Curish told The Indianapolis Star that Saturday's event was hampered by poor weather, competing events such as the Carmel Marathon and a lingering controversy over policies at the national Komen organization.

Controversy erupted in early 2012 when the national Komen organization pulled financial support for Planned Parenthood’s mammogram program. The decision, seen as politically motivated, infuriated supporters and was quickly reversed, irritating other supporters.

The fallout lingered. More than 50 Komen events across the country reported fundraising declines of 20 percent to 30 percent or more in 2012.

More than 27,000 people signed up for the 2012 race, down about 28 percent from the previous year. At its peak, about 40,000 people participated in the run/walk, making the Indianapolis race the sixth-largest in the country.

"A few years ago, there were two big races, Komen and the Mini Marathon," Curish said. "With all of the other things that were happening, it was a great day and everybody was happy."

Curish said her organization and the group that runs the Carmel Marathon have agreed that next year the two events won't fall on the same weekend. The Carmel Marathon helped raise money for Komen this year.

Next year's Race for the Cure is scheduled for April 12.

It's not clear yet how much money this year's race raised, but Curish said it might fall from last year's $2 million.

"With our registrations down, our fundraising might be down as well," she said.


  • Shun them
    An organization that supposedly supports life survival but supports killing the most innocent will never have my support. I'm glad to hear that others who support babies' lives have shunned Komen. Our money can easily be diverted to worthwhile organizations.
  • overload
    Many people affected by other cancers see the immense hold and influence the breast cancer org. has on fund-raising, pink products, a month of NFL promotion etc. It's great that there are so many survivors--but most other cancers have nowhere near the treatment options, and thus nowhere near the 'survivors' to continue fighting.
  • People were shocked
    No doubt the controversy surprised a lot of people who thought Komen was all about breast cancer research and didn't know where the money was actually going. Many who support Komen are either survivors, or knew someone who lost the battle. They're about celebrating life! Finding out that your money is going to an organization that uses any of it to take life certainly seems inconsistent any celebration of life and survival. If Planned Parenthood just did mammograms and perhaps birth control (except by abortion) I really doubt this whole thing would have amounted to much.
  • Komen
    The weather could have played a big part in the turn out.
  • Reply
    To John Sorg: Did you read the article? It clearly mentions the issue with Planned Parenthood.
  • Still a Great turnout
    21,380!! Still a lot of people, on a cold day, six days after the Boston Marathon bombings. You can read a lot into why there is a drop and you can nip-pick about them supporting certain causes, but the bulk of the work has been good and has made an impact. My wife is an 8-year survivor now. 20 years ago it might not have turned out that way. Read the annual report (link below) and draw your own conclusion. I will continue to support Komen. http://ww5.komen.org/AboutUs/FinancialInformation.html
  • Good!
    Mark me down as someone who does not suppor those who support Planned Parenthood.
  • Race down?
    I don't donate to the race or participate in the race since they pulled out of providing mammograms to planned parenthood. I donate to planned parenthood now.
  • How naive
    I encourage you to research.
  • Race for the cure
    I wonder why participation is down?? could it be the association with "Planned Butcherhood"??? I wonder why this isn't mentioned???
    • Pink is everywhere
      Komen has gotten bad press unrelated to the Planned Parenthood controversy. Many people realize that their goal is endless expansion (and extracting more govt funding) at the expense of other charities.

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