As many of us know, October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. As someone who has lost loved ones to this disease, I am happy to introduce an entrepreneur that is looking to bring awareness to this disease, year round. Lindsey Compton is the CEO and founder of Hair's A Cure, which is a breast cancer foundation that seeks to celebrate the love of healthy black hair & body while raising awareness and funds for breast cancer treatments. At 22 years of age, I am impressed to witness her tenacity and passion for such an important cause. After having some life challenges, Lindsey quickly realized that God's plan for her was different than what she planned. While researching statistics of breast cancer for African-American men and women, she came up with, Hair's A Cure. Here is some of the research she found: Of the estimated 34(%) percent of African-American women diagnosed with breast cancer in 2011, nearly 19(%) percent of them passed away – that’s over 6,000 lives taken due to this disease. 77(%) percent of African-American women who are diagnosed with breast cancer survive compared to 90(%) percent of Caucasian, non-Hispanic women.
Lindsey's goal is to educate African-American men and women on the importance of healthy living, bring awareness of Breast Cancer and raise money to help diagnosed patients pay for treatments. She shared with me that, "Hair’s A Cure will help increase the survival rate, and teach women about the importance of our health from the soles of our feet to the ends of our hair strands". I hope you enjoy her story.
1. Tell me your story. What were you doing before you started your own business?
Right before I started my business I was making plans to fly off to New York and attend graduate school. Unfortunately, things came up that made me depressed for a short period of time. I began to realize earlier this summer (2012) that my plans for my life were not the plans God had for my life.
I was so used to strategically planning the next steps in my path that I had lost my understanding for a moment that God directs us where he needs us in life. For me, that was Hair's A Cure.
As a 22-year-old, I was shocked and disheartened when seeing that African-American women have the highest mortality rate of breast cancer related deaths compared to any other race (41% higher). This has a lot to do with lack of funds, lack of early detection, and other preventable actions (please read the article here: http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/therootdc/post/breast-cancer-mortality-rates-for-african-american-women-disproportionately-high/2012/04/09/gIQAxJoR6S_blog.html?socialreader_check=0&denied=1 )
Although it is taking a lot of work to reach my dream of saving lives, I'm pursuing my path one small step at a time!
2. What made you want to start a business and what is your mission?
I wanted to start Hair's A Cure because I was appalled by the statistics of African-American women and men who die each year due to factors related to either not being able to afford breast cancer treatments or late tumor detection.
One day I was just thinking about all of these staggering statistics and the thought of "Hair's A Cure" came to mind. Beyond that, as of eight months ago I have been extremely involved within the community of natural hair and healthier living. This combined with God's dream gave me the inspiration to start this business.
My mission is to "Promote Hair Just as Healthy as Breasts" and I want to do this by offering affordable cancer treatments to African-American women and men who cannot afford them, while educating our race on the importance of healthy eating. What we eat DOES make a difference in our health and helps to prevent diseases.
3. What inspires you? What keeps you motivated daily to keep growing your business?
My motivation is imagining the day I will be able to drive to the homes of women and men whom I have helped to give funds for affordable cancer treatments. That is my motivation, and that is what helps to keep me going.
4. Do you have a mentor? Who is it and why? Do you believe it's important to have one?
No, no mentor! I believe it's important to have one, but I have yet to find one of my own. For now I set my eyes on Christ and pray for the best.
5. What would you tell someone who wants to get involved in your line of business but doesn't know how to get started?
Realize that this is not about you or making your money. This industry has turned into money hungry people capitalizing off of individuals who are dying from this disease. It's sick, actually.
If you want to save lives then save lives. There's nothing wrong with creating a special breast cancer t-shirt or planning fundraising events. But when your ultimate motive is to make yourself money, then that's a problem. This is (and should be) a sacrificial move to help others because you have been blessed to be alive, healthy and well.
You have to have a passion for this. If you don't have passion for this field, then find out what your passion is and go from there. You will be 10 times more successful by doing what you were meant to do rather than forcing yourself into a place you don't fit.
6. What advice would you give to someone with an entrepreneurial spirit?
Simple, never stop dreaming, but don't keep dreaming to the point where you don't get up and take action in pursing your dreams. Success does not fall out of the sky. You have to climb the ladder to reach it.
It's a lonely road to the top, believe me. But it's a rewarding one in the end.
7. How can anyone get involved and help your foundation?
We are looking for donations of $10 or more to help with startup costs and to help get treatments for patients in need. Here is the donation link: http://www.gofundme.com/hairsacure.
I want to thank Lindsey for taking the challenge to share her business with us. She has started a great cause and I hope you will find it in your heart to help her and others in any way. Support Breast Cancer Awareness Month anyway you can.
Be someone’s motivation and tell us your story! To be featured on PeopleWhoProsper.com email Tamara@garrisonprosperitysolutions.com. Put PEOPLEWHOPROSPER in the subject line and share a little about yourself.