WITH October marking Breast Cancer Awareness Month, one business is playing its part in raising awareness and money.
The Clinical Academy in Portsmouth is selling T-shirts as part of the national fundraising event Wear It Pink organised by Breast Cancer Now.
The company experiences first-hand the affect the condition has on women as it offers nipple-areola reconstruction tattoos.
Training director Naomi O’Hara said: ‘We get to see in person how emotional women can get once they have had breast surgery following a cancer diagnosis.
‘They have finished their treatment but they still have to deal with the mental sides of what they have been through and for many, the scars or look of their breasts is a reminder.
‘Having the tattooing can really help and is like the first step to their lives getting back on track.’
The T-shirts are being sold at The Clinical Academy, based at 1000 Lakeside, North Harbour, with all proceeds going to the charity.
Naomi said they were excited to be supporting such a good cause.
‘It was important for us to contribute,’ she added.
The Clinical Academy works alongside Queen Alexandra Hospital, in Cosham, and patients who are suitable for the nipple-areola reconstruction tattoos are referred to them by the surgeons for a discounted price.
Naomi and her team also work alongside the Royal Marsden Hospital in London, teaching nurses how to do the tattoos.
‘This reconstruction is actually really popular,’ Naomi added.
‘It has got more and more popular, especially the 3D effects we can do.
‘We are also finding more people want to learn how to do it.’
Since launching three years ago, The Clinical Academy has faced difficulties with sharing what they do.
When posting images of the tattoos on social media site Facebook, they are banned from the site for 24 hours and their pictures deleted as the images are deemed explicit content.
Naomi said: ‘It really bothers me because women don’t get to know about the work we do and the difference we can make to their lives.
‘This is the 21st century and the women who have it done are proud to show off how it makes them feel.’