Boating is a successful media enterprise. We produce hundreds of videos per year, welcome millions of visitors per month to our digital channels and, of course, publish the world’s largest circulation magazine covering recreational boating. As a team, we enjoy the high profile, accolades and financial rewards of that success. But, as a team, we also believe that success comes with a responsibility to do more. We believe we should use the platform success has granted us to give something back to the world that has blessed us with that success.
We chose to do so by helping raise awareness of breast cancer.
Why breast cancer? We’ve each been personally affected by breast cancer, having either friends or family members afflicted. Breast cancer is also the most common cancer in women worldwide. That is why this month’s cover model, Annie McFarland, is not only a vivacious and life-loving woman, she is also a lifelong boater and a breast cancer survivor. Annie’s very presence on the cover is an affirmation that cancer is not an automatic death sentence. It also proves that patients can thrive in its wake.
Experts at the American Cancer Society, and others, maintain that body image is often one of the many deleterious effects breast cancer patients must struggle with. Certainly, learning to deal with the physical consequences of breast cancer, which can range from temporary hair loss to the permanent loss of all or part of a breast or breasts, is a personal journey for which no single solution exists. But, by the power of example, the confidence required to star on the cover of a magazine, clad in a swimsuit, celebrates body image in an impactful way. We believe, to paraphrase novelist Paul Coelho, that the world is changed by one’s actions, not one’s opinions.
There’s more for you to consider about breast cancer and boating than just a cover image, which was expertly shot, by the way, by our own Garrett Cortese. Annie’s story, which you can read here, is a message of joy and hope from a boater, just like us and just like you. It is hope and joy that we aim to use our success to deliver.