A MUM moved by inspiring life stories of women like her affected by breast cancer has devised a way to commend their courage and spirit.
Sarah Pickles organised the Butterfly Breast Cancer Awards to shine a light on the resilience of those diagnosed with the most common cancer for women and those who support them.
And the first edition was such a resounding success that she plans to do it all over again next year.
“I’m so grateful to everybody who helped make my dream a reality,” she said.
"I have carried the vision for these awards in my heart, and it was a magical moment watching it come to life.
“It was a night where the achievements and dedication of these extraordinary individuals took centre stage, leaving an indelible mark on the hearts of all who attended.”
Sarah, who lives near Middlewich, was diagnosed with triple-negative breast cancer in 2014 at the age of 32.
Her own journey through diagnosis, double mastectomy, and reconstruction allowed her to connect with individuals who had faced similar challenges.
From those conversations she conceived an idea that would become the Butterfly Breast Cancer Awards.
The inaugural ceremony took place at the spectacular Vale Royal Abbey in Whitegate, Northwich, and was hosted by Radio Northwich presenter Kim Smith.
A highlight was the presentation to finalists of a special gift - a butterfly in a box donated by Butterflies for Occasions.
This symbolic gesture represented hope and signified the journey these individuals had embarked on.
The intention is for each butterfly to be released at home as a powerful symbol of transformation and renewal.
Proceeds from the ceremony, which raised £6,000 on the night and will increase by a further £2,500 received for auction prizes, are to be channelled to Simply The Breast, a fundraising initiative Kim started following her own diagnosis with breast cancer and is dedicated to supporting the Mid-Cheshire Hospitals Charity.
Sarah added: “This remarkable gathering was not just about recognition; it was also a fundraiser for a noble cause.
“The ceremony became a testament to the strength and beauty of the countless individuals fluttering like butterflies in the breast cancer community, each making a remarkable impact.”
The 2024 Butterfly Breast Cancer Awards are already in the works and are scheduled to take place on Friday, September 20, again at Vale Royal Abbey.
For more information about the event, ticket sales, and details on how to nominate someone, visit www.sarahepickles.uk
Award Winners and Finalists 2023:
Inspirational Empowerment Award
sponsored by Centre of Excellence
Winner: Julie Grabham
sponsored by MGC Aerospace
Winner: Heather Glover (Skarlette)
Dr Michelle Harvie
Charity Impact Award
sponsored by Aqueous Digital
Winner: Emma Osborne, The Osborne Trust
St Luke’s Hospice
Shine Bright Foundation
Charity Impact Team Award
sponsored by Eaton Homes and Enigma Healthcare
Winner: Prevent Breast Cancer
Finalist: Macmillan Breast Care Team
Transformed Life Award
sponsored by Enigma Healthcare
Winner: Emma Guy
Community Volunteer Award
sponsored by Eaton Homes
Winner: Amanda Johnson
sponsored by Cheshire Life
Winner: Sarah Pickles
sponsored by Sarah E Pickles
Winner: Sue France
Inspirational Community Breast Cancer Champion
sponsored by Layers Treats
Winner: Kim Smith
Other sponsors included: Jacqui O Wedding and Event flowers, Reflect Clinic, Love the Dentist, Get It Off Your Chest: The Funny Side of Breast Cancer podcast, Write Blend, AJ & Friends, Radio Northwich, HIA Design, Qube Luxe, Desired Occasions, Butterflies for Occasions and Universal Live
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