Palmerston North woman Cheralyn Sorrell was relieved when she was diagnosed with breast cancer.

With a family history of the disease, Cheralyn says it was always a case of 'if and not when'.

So, she put her trust into the hands of experts and took her treatment journey head-on.

In 2018 Cheralyn underwent a double mastectomy and is spending this year in recovery.

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"The last few years have been non-stop with treatments and surgeries, but I finally feel like I'm getting there now.

"I've taken this year off work to get better, and now I want to give back to all the people who have helped me.

"I've been given a second chance at life and I've received so much support, so I wanted to give my thanks by hosting a Pink Ribbon Breakfast for the first time.

"I don't think I could've got through it all without the support of Breast Cancer Foundation.

"I don't know if my daughter will get breast cancer but if she does, I want her to have the same support I had.

"I also want to get the message out there about what it's like for people to go through this, and that it's not just the person with breast cancer who suffers, it's painful for everyone around them too.

"That's why I'm fundraising, to make sure Breast Cancer Foundation's services can continue into the future."

Around 120 people in the MidCentral DHB area are diagnosed with breast cancer each year.

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Last year more than 65 Pink Ribbon Breakfasts were held in Palmerston North.

With more than 3300 women across the country diagnosed with breast cancer annually, and more than 650 a year still dying, the need for support is greater than ever.

This has been exacerbated by the Covid-19 lockdown restrictions, where around 400 women who would have received a breast cancer diagnosis missed out on getting mammograms or a referral from their GP, delaying their ability to start treatment.

Proceeds from Pink Ribbon Breakfast will go towards helping these women get the support they need, as well as those already undergoing treatment.

They will also help to drive early detection and ground-breaking research to prevent further deaths.

Breast Cancer Foundation chief executive Evangelia Henderson said they were grateful to everyone who is taking part in Pink Ribbon Breakfast.

"This year, the Covid-19 situation has made life harder for breast cancer patients, so the need for support has never been higher.

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"Thanks to the generosity of Kiwis up and down the country, we are able to continue our life-saving work.

"The proceeds raised from Pink Ribbon Breakfast will bring us one step closer to our vision of zero deaths from breast cancer.

"So, please get involved in whatever way you can – your support will make a real difference."

For more information and to register to host a Pink Ribbon Breakfast, visit www.pinkribbonbreakfast.co.nz