By: Ruth Neri, Program Director Look Good Feel Better Germany
The look good feel better program in Germany and its parent organization, DKMS LIFE, would like to send Look Good Feel Better US our congratulations on their 25th anniversary. Since its founding in 1989, the Look Good Feel Better program reaches out from the US to over 25 other countries worldwide. In 1995 Germany was the 6th country to introduce this program for cancer patients. Since then the US affiliate was a shining example for us and we are very pleased to be a part of the international LGFB cancer care program.
DKMS LIFE was founded in 1995 as a nonprofit company named “Aktiv gegen Krebs“ (AGK, active against cancer) following the example of the American LGFB organization to run cosmetic workshops for cancer patients. In 2005 AGK was renamed DKMS LIFE and is a part of the DKMS Family, the largest database network worldwide of stem cell donors to eradicate blood cancer.
In Germany 1,200 look good feel better cosmetic workshops are held annually in more than 250 medical facilities nationwide, including cancer care centers, hospitals and local community venues serving about 8,500 patients. Since its founding, more than 100,000 cancer patients have regained their self-esteem and courage to face life. In 2009 we began offering beauty workshops for young cancer patients. About 500 teens between 11 and 21 years have participated in the look good feel better for teens program.
The German look good feel better program for the benefit of cancer patients is only possible through the generous support of numerous well-known companies, particularly those of the cosmetics industry, such as Douglas, Lancaster, Astor and Manhattan, Estée Lauder Companies, Parfums Christian Dior, L’Oreal Paris, Henkel, Shiseido and Avène. About 200 specially trained volunteer beauty professionals support look good feel better in Germany. Without the help of all, we would not be nearly as successful in the mission to help women with cancer to regain joy in their lives.
For the nationwide expansion of the workshops, public attention and further financial support is important to help more German women with cancer. To create a foundation for future growth of look good feel better, in 2005 an annual Charity Ladies‘ Lunch in Hamburg, Berlin, Munich, Düsseldorf or Cologne was introduced. In 2006 the annual charity gala, dreamball, was introduced and is hosted each year in Berlin. Through this charity event many celebrities, and important guests from the fields of economics, politics and media are recruited to support our LGFB program.
There is a great demand for the look good feel better workshops, because annually more than 220,000 German women are newly diagnosed with cancer. Therefore, our goal is to increase our capacity to offer free cosmetic workshops for female cancer patients in the years to come. We look forward to doing so in a strong partnership with our international LGFB affiliates.
We wish you all the best for the future!