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Battling for breasts (and lives) 

click to enlarge COURTESY OF ALIA VIA FLICKR CREATIVE COMMONS
  • Courtesy of Alia via Flickr Creative Commons

This weekend, people will swarm the streets to Race for the Cure on behalf of the Susan G. Komen Foundation's Central Indiana affiliate.

Others will hit their yoga mats in support of finding a cure for breast cancer and in protest of Komen's now-reversed decision to deny grant funding to Planned Parenthood.

The national flap occurred after Republican Congressman from Florida, Cliff Stearns, launched an investigation to determine if the women's health provider funds abortions with federal dollars.

Planned Parenthood supporters cried foul and several donors ceased support. National Public Radio reported at the time that Komen was already being squeezed by "several Catholic dioceses around the country." They severed support because Komen granted a few hundred thousands dollars to breast exams at Planned Parenthood.

Here in Indiana, Dana Curish, the executive director of Komen's Central Indiana affiliate, wrote an open letter on March 29 saying that Indiana funding decisions "are made by a local grant review committee and are based on which programs will have the greatest impact on reducing breast cancer deaths."

She emphasized her organization's impact on local outreach and research.

"We know many have been upset about the recent controversies but we can't turn our backs on the people in Central Indiana who will need help – mothers, sisters, daughters, friends, neighbors," she concluded.

"Let's show the world that Hoosiers care about women's lives and will let nothing stand in their way to help those in need!"

Meanwhile, supporters of Planned Parenthood Indiana are also rallying in their own peaceful way.

"Planned Parenthood of Indiana is an important resource for women's health and wellness and I want the community to be reminded of the good that organization does so I've organized an event to benefit them," said yoga instructor and life coach Lisa Riolo in an email.

She recruited four instructors from four studios to donate their time to teach 45-minute classes.

9a.m. - Heather Thomas Leo of The Yoga Center

10a.m. - Eric Bryant, Invoke Studio

11a.m. - Lisa Daugherty, CITYOGA

12 p.m. - Brad Burke, Yoga Monkey

"Classes will be appropriate for anyone, even people new to yoga who want to come see what it's like and benefit a great cause at the same time," she said.

No registration is necessary, people just need to come to Earth House about 10 minutes before the class they'd like to take.

We also will auction items donated by local businesses to help generate more funds for Planned Parenthood of Indiana.

Participants are asked to bring a suggested minimum donation of $15, and a yoga mat, if they have one.

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