Into the Pink

As a prelude to 10KSA's milestone event on December 12 of this year, people from around the globe submitted their own designs for a tarha (scarf) that captures the soul of 10KSA's breast cancer awareness initiative.

This year, Saudi Arabian women are set to make history. On December 12, under the auspices of 10KSA, 10,000 women will gather to form the world's largest human ribbon, in a bid to raise local, regional and global awareness about breast cancer.

As part of the many events leading up to the big day, 10KSA launched a competition called Design the Tarha and invited the public to submit designs that will appear on the edges of the tarha (scarf). Men and women from Saudi Arabia and throughout the globe submitted their designs for the tarha. The inspiring designs were plentiful, and the top prize went to Honayda Serafi, a painter, sculptor and founder and CEO of a fashion company. Serafi's design is inspired by the Prophet Mohammed's prayer about healing from all diseases and features Islamic geometric patterns in the background. Word meanings are dominant in her design. She selected the word "Shiffa" in Arabic, which means "healing," and drew it in the shape of a swan. "10KSA is a Saudi initiative that has international echoes. For this reason we chose to combine Eastern and Western traditions in the design to represent the different cultures and spread awareness of breast cancer as far as possible through all channels," says Serafi. Each of the 10,000 women participating in 10KSA will wear Serafi's design on December 12.

Other designs that have been singled out for special recognition include Omaima Al Azhari's tarha, which is inspired by Arabic poetry, and that of Amber Sakai, which pays tribute to the beloved landscape of the women of Saudi Arabia, while representing femininity and strength. The design team of Noura Zahran and Rezan Gassas also created a singular design, adorning their tarha with the names of their friends and acquaitances who are breast cancer surivors.

10KSA is a holistic health initiative with a focus, in 2015, on breast cancer. The 10KSA vision is to be recognized as the local holistic health engagement platform with global impact. Although Saudi Arabia has state-of-the-art medical facilities and a 100% government funded global healthcare program for Saudi citizens, the country has one of the highest rates of morbidity in breast cancer, because of lack of awareness and cultural understanding. It is within this context that 10KSA seeks to raise breast cancer awareness in Saudi Arabia, with a goal to inform Saudi females about the importance of early cancer detection and screening. 10KSA is championed by Alf Khair and Al Bidayah Center. Alf Khair is the social enterprise founded by HRH Princess Reema bint Bandar bin Sultan Al Saud, who is also Co-Founder of 10KSA and Co-Chair of its host committee.

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