Reese Witherspoon Set to Join Festivities at Avon Walk for Breast Cancer Washington, DC in May

NEW YORK, April 10 /PRNewswire/ -- The Avon Foundation today announced that Reese Witherspoon will be a special guest at the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer in Washington, DC on Sunday, May 4, 2008, the second day of the weekend-long event. Witherspoon, the Avon Global Ambassador and Honorary Chair of the Avon Foundation, will spend time throughout the day with the thousands of Walk participants, including walkers, crew and volunteers, who are raising lifesaving funds and awareness to advance access to care and finding a cure for breast cancer. In addition to spending time with the Walk participants, Witherspoon will play a special role in the inspirational Closing Ceremony, during which new DC-area grants will be announced, and she will meet with local Avon Foundation-funded breast cancer organizations to learn firsthand the impact of the funds raised.

"We are thrilled to have Reese join us for the Avon Walk DC," said Avon Foundation Executive Director Carol Kurzig. "During the past year, Reese has been a champion for the Avon Foundation's commitment to women. Now she continues to lend her support to the Avon Foundation and to our Avon Walk participants in DC. We are excited that Reese will meet the women and men who are raising funds, and the researchers and organizations that are using those funds to save lives."

In commenting on her role, Reese has stated, "I am very excited to be partnering with the Avon Foundation, which is known the world over as a crusader for women's causes. I am truly impressed by how Avon has been able to affect real change. I feel a great responsibility in my own life to give back to society. As the Honorary Chairman of the Avon Foundation, I am proud to be joining in the great philanthropic work that is already underway." During the August 2007 activities surrounding the announcement of her new role as Honorary Chair of the Foundation, Witherspoon spent time with Avon Walk walkers at a training walk in preparation for the 2007 Avon Walk for Breast Cancer Los Angeles.

The Avon Walk for Breast Cancer Washington, DC is the second of nine Avon Walks taking place April to October this year. Since the launch of the Avon Walk series in 2003, nearly $200 million has been raised through the dedication of 75,000 participating women and men. Last year alone, nearly 50 grants, ranging from $100,000 to $6 million, were awarded during the Closing Ceremonies of the Avon Walks. Through 2007, the Avon Breast Cancer Crusade has raised more than $525 million through numerous programs worldwide.

About the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer and the Avon Foundation

The Avon Walks are non-competitive weekend fundraising walks for all fitness levels that require a significant commitment from participants. Each walker is required to raise at least $1,800 in donations and undertake months of training to prepare to tackle the course, which offers the option of covering a marathon (26 miles) or a marathon and a half (39 miles) over two days. Among the walkers' ranks in 2007 were men and women of all ages, from all 50 states and many other countries, including more than 1,700 breast cancer survivors. This large, diverse group was united by their shared desire to eradicate breast cancer and help those touched by the disease.

The Avon Foundation was founded in 1955 to improve the lives of women, and brings this mission to life through focus on two key issues: breast cancer and domestic violence. The Avon Breast Cancer Crusade launched in 1992, and Avon breast cancer programs in some 50 countries have raised more than $525 million to advance access to care and finding a cure for breast cancer, with a focus on the medically underserved. Funding is awarded to beneficiaries ranging from leading cancer centers to community-based breast health programs to support five critical areas: awareness and education; screening and diagnosis; access to treatment; support services; and scientific research. Fundraising is through a variety of "pink ribbon" products, events, races and walks; the largest is the U.S. Avon Walk for Breast Cancer series.

The complete 2008 Avon Walk for Breast Cancer schedule includes: Houston, TX (April 12-13); Washington, DC (May 3-4); Boston, MA (May 17-18); Chicago, IL (May 31-June 1); Rocky Mountains, CO (June 28-29); San Francisco, CA (July 12-13); Los Angeles, CA (September 13-14); New York, NY (October 4-5); and Charlotte, NC (October 25-26). For more information, or to register or donate, visit http://www.avonwalk.org or call 888-541-WALK.

The Avon Walk for Breast Cancer thanks National Sponsor: Reebok; Official Sponsors: Genentech BioOncology, Novartis Oncology and Prevention Magazine; and Official Water: FIJI

Remember: early detection can help save lives. Schedule your mammogram or clinical breast exam today. For more breast cancer information and resources, visit http://www.cancer.org (keyword breast cancer) or http://www.avonfoundation.org, where you can access free printable breast cancer informational literature.

SOURCE Avon Foundation

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