By Funmilola Olukomaiya
Gbenga Artsmith Jewelry in partnership with CancerAware Nigeria, a non-profit organisation is proud to announce one of the biggest breast cancer awareness campaigns on this side of the clime and it is themed, ‘Life on the Pink Lane’.
This project will not only increase attention and support, early detection, treatment as well as palliative care of the disease (breast cancer) but it will also raise funds for indigent patients through the auction of the pieces in our pink-themed collection and 20% proceeds from sales.
Over 100,000 Nigerians are diagnosed with cancer every year and 80,000 dies of the disease; this is an alarming figure and it is at the core of the drive behind this initiative.
The campaign is proudly supported by BellaNaija, CNN, Ebonylife TV, TVC, The Place Restaurants, This Day Style magazine, Vanguard Allure Magazine, The Sun Newspapers, Glintz Photography, and Bm Pro Makeup.
According to Gbenga Ayo-Dada, the creative director of Gbenga Artsmith Jewelry,
“My first ‘encounter’ with breast cancer was 20 years ago when my mum lost one of her closest friends untimely to breast cancer. She was a pioneer in the event decoration industry of Nigeria. Cancer nipped her very promising career in the bud.
“This year again, we lost another family friend to breast cancer. She was a formidable force by many standards; an accomplished lawyer both in public service and private legal consultancy.
“One day, I realized that we will continue to lose great assets to this merciless disease if we do not rise to fight it any way we can. By the way, 85% of my clientele base is made up of women and so what affects women invariably affects my brand.”
Modelling the pieces from the “Life On The Pink Lane” collective are Miss Nigeria 1979 and lawyer (Helen Prest-Ajayi), celebrity fashion designer (Lanre Dasilva-Ajayi), Brand and Marketing strategist/Gospel recording artiste (Tolu Odukoya-Ijogun), Actor/Producer (Kemi Lala-Akindoju), Founder, Guardians of Hope Foundation (Bosun Adewale) and three breast cancer survivors (Chinenye Okeke, Kesiena Martins and Halima Okafor).
Halima Okafor is a 29-year old Patient Navigator with RFCA and breast cancer survivor. She was diagnosed with the disease when she was only 23 years old. Today, she is whole again; Ransomed, healed, restored!
Chinenye Ngozi Okeke is a realtor and a 31-year old breast cancer survivor. She would have been part of the statistics of cancer deaths if not for early detection and treatment. According to her, she overcame cancer first from the place of her mind; choosing instead to focus on her work, God and His word rather than the tragedy of the disease. Today, she does not look one bit like what she has been through!
Kesiena Martins is a 59-year old entrepreneur and breast cancer survivor who was first diagnosed 10 years ago. Surviving breast cancer has, more than ever before, taught her the power of faith, prayer, and resilience. In her own words, breast cancer has “…changed my outlook to life, because it was a near death situation and you realize the vanity of life. All you need is peace and contentment.
Photography: Glint Photography
Makeup: Bm Pro Makeup
Outfits: Moofa Designs, Lanre Dasilva-Ajayi, Kiks Place, Salt by Damadel
Hair: Demola Did It!
Fascinators: Fascinators by Omoge
Leather Headwrap: Ojulewa Studio
Jewelry: Gbenga Artsmith @kennybankscollection