'We can make it better for people': Fayetteville breast cancer survivor's foundation provides free mammograms, makeovers

FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. (WTVD) -- A Fayetteville breast cancer survivor has made it her mission to help other women fighting the same battle in the Sandhills.

Reverend Sherri Arnold-Graham was diagnosed with breast cancer in 1999 at the age of 36. Five years after surviving the disease, the longtime Fayetteville resident decided to start The Sherri Arnold Graham Foundation, after realizing that many people in the area lacked sufficient health insurance.

"We were established to try to reduce the health disparities, regarding breast cancer mortality rates among minorities," Arnold-Graham said. The minister says, while African American women are less likely to develop breast cancer, they are three times more likely to die of the disease.

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For the last 15 years, Arnold-Graham's foundation has provided free services and outreaches to close the health disparity during Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

With the help of generous donations, volunteers and money out of Arnold-Graham's own pocket, the foundation has been able to provide free mammograms, insightful information for men and women and makeover programs to instill confidence in women battling the disease.

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On Monday morning, several women went to Arnold-Graham's business, Sherri's Crowning Glory: Hairdressers and Spa, and were able to apply some make-up and wear a wig, putting on a photoshoot afterwards.

"We help create opportunities to rejoice... but to literally celebrate life," Arnold-Graham said.

The nonprofit also gave out hundreds of free meals to the community on Monday afternoon.

While many of their free programs are offered for the month of October, Arnold-Graham told ABC11 she also tries to offer them to individuals in need throughout the year.

Those looking to volunteer or donate to the foundation can go to their website for details.

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