Local cancer campaign heads to Hollywood 0
Yael Cohen, 25, the founder of F*ck Cancer, shows off a T-shirt at her office in Vancouver, Sunday. (CARMINE MARINELLI, 24 HOURS)
A local woman is in L.A. this week - but not for fame and stardom. Instead, 25-year-old Yael Cohen is going to teach people how to 'f-k cancer.'
The creator of the F-k Cancer education campaign flew to L.A. Sunday to collaborate with Funny or Die, an online comedy site known for working with famous names. There, Cohen will film a video that teaches people how to do self-checks for cancer.
"That's the first step: education. Getting people to learn," she said, adding she hopes the support of Funny or Die will help the video become viral. "The second part is sharing - not only teaching yourself but those around you."
The campaign began in 2009 after Cohen created a shirt featuring the slogan 'F-k Cancer' for her mom who was fighting cancer. While Cohen thought the shirt would only be worn in private, it wasn't long before her mom wore it everywhere.
"She couldn't walk off a block without people stopping her to hear her story," Cohen said of the conversations sparked by the slogan.
The slick campaign has since grown and even been featured in Teen Vogue. Today, it focuses on educating a younger demographic about early detection, encouraging youth to talk to their parents about getting checked for cancer.
"A lot of kids came back and said, 'Whoa. That's awkward. How do you even talk about that?'" Cohen said, comparing it to the other awkward talk between parents and their kids. "Your parents gave you the sex talk because they love you and care about you and wanted to keep you safe, not particularly because they wanted to talk about sex."
As for the 'shocking' slogan? Cohen said it's not meant to be offensive but empowering for those tired of being victims of cancer.
"We've sugar-coated cancer for so long socially and it just doesn't resonate anymore, certainly not with our generation."