Bras For A Cause® 2019 is a wrap!

The event was dedicated to what the Soroptimists provide to the community’s women.

by Juliann Laufer

Whew! What a wonderful event that was hosted by Soroptimist International of Oxnard on Sunday, October 27!

Almost 200 attended that meant filling the Ballroom at the Courtyard by Marriott – Oxnard/Ventura close to capacity for the 6th Year extravaganza. The event is dedicated to their Comfort Kits (gift bags for mastectomy patients service by St. John’s Regional Medical centers in Camarillo and Oxnard) and, generally, to programs the Soroptimists provide to the community’s women and girls.

The tables were decorated in pink in observance of October – Breast Cancer Awareness month with lovely rose centerpieces that went home with one lucky winner from each table. Festooning the two sides of the room were Raffle Opportunities using the ticket-in-the-bag for only your favorites. There were Silent Auction offerings with bid sheets and many bottles of wine (and maybe a bit of the hard stuff, too!) to choose your preferences. The club displayed their activities board, their STOP Human Trafficking and Sexual Slavery accomplishments board and, most importantly, the contents of a Comfort Kit.

And the pièces de résistance: the decorated mannequins, in all their glory, were spread across the entire back wall of the room! The line-up started with “The Luck of the Irish” ended with “Harley Girl” with many exotic and well designed manikins in-between. Was your favorite patriotic? What about beachy? Or were you one of the bidding contestants for the candy adorned “Cancer Sucks” creation?

If you only went for the food, augmented by the open bar, you would have left happy! The Courtyard did a marvelous job from the meal to the unobtrusive service and topped it all off with dessert!

The Keynote Speaker was Dortha Chu, M.D., Ph.D., City of Hope, Santa Clarita who dispelled many myths about cancer in general and delivered much needed confidence about the cure rate for breast cancer, her specialty. Color her banner: Get Your Mammogram! She was followed by Alicia Zaragoza, NP-C, CN-RN, St. John’s Regional Cancer Center Nurse Navigator. She recalled stories of happiness from receivers of the Comfort Kits in Oxnard and Camarillo.

Perhaps your attendance was predicated on how could you help the patients. They covered that too! The Master of Ceremonies, Dr. Tom Holden, offered the audience an opportunity to sponsor a Comfort Kit or two with a show of your bidder’s paddle. More than 70 Kits earned sponsors!

The 6th Annual Bras for a Cause® is a WRAP! See you next year!

Although our chapter is in Oxnard, Soroptimist is a worldwide non profit organization…and, there is a chapter in Ventura. The Ventura Chapter is smaller, but they attended and participated in the event. Both Chapters focus on:

1. Making sure every woman in Ventura having a mastectomy goes home with a care kit

2. Giving cash awards to those who have overcome obstacles and continued their education (Live your Dream) Candidates must be in Ventura.

3. March in Ventura – Stop Human Trafficking

4. Helping young girls in lower income areas learn how to apply for college and scholarships (Dream it be It!)

Soroptimist International of Ventura

P.O. Box 6133

Ventura, CA 93006

Sherri Tarpchinoff Bennett, President 805-910-9620

Cyndi Damron, Membership 805-216-4728



Juliann Laufer Soroptimist International Oxnard can be reached at


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