Zeta Tau Alpha and the National Football League have been tackling breast cancer together for 15 years. This season, ZTA celebrates the distribution of the 5 millionth pink ribbon given to an NFL fan in this program.
On Sunday, 70 ZTA alumnae and collegiate members will contribute to this milestone as they team up with the New York Jets to spread breast cancer education and awareness at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, NJ. Prior to the game, ZTA members will be gathered at stadium entrances handing out pink breast cancer awareness ribbons as part of the partnership with the NFL's "A Crucial Catch" campaign.
"We are honored and so excited to restart our partnership with the Jets this year to distribute pink ribbons at the game," said Jill Vanzino, president of the ZTA NYC Alumnae Chapter. "Breast cancer unfortunately touches everyone's lives in one way or another and this platform is a great opportunity for us to help educate NFL fans of all ages and spread awareness to millions of fans.
"The color pink in the stands and on football fields all over America has become expected every October and we are so proud that the Jets and all their fans will be donning pink on Oct. 13 to raise much needed awareness for this important cause."
In 1999, ZTA partnered with the Washington Redskins for its first breast cancer awareness game. Since that time, the "A Crucial Catch" campaign has grown to encompass the entire NFL. ZTA is the league's sanctioned fan outreach partner for the campaign. ZTA and the Redskins will celebrate this 15-year partnership by creating a giant pink ribbon on the field Sunday, Oct. 20, to symbolize the distribution of 5 million pink ribbons to NFL fans supporting breast cancer education and awareness. The distribution of 60,000 ribbons at Sunday's Jets-Steelers game is one step closer to this significant milestone.
"Our partnership with the ZTA is strong," said Jesse Linder, director of community relations for the New York Jets. "Together we hope to make a difference by honoring patients, survivors and family members impacted by breast cancer while getting the message out to fans."
Since 1992, Zeta Tau Alpha Fraternity has focused its philanthropic efforts on breast cancer education and awareness. Each year, millions of pink ribbons are distributed and thousands of survivors are honored through ZTA programs. ZTA was founded in 1898 at the State Female Normal School (now Longwood University) in Farmville, VA, and has more than 225,000 members worldwide. One of the nation's largest Greek women's groups, ZTA develops members' leadership, academic and service skills, and supports breast cancer education and awareness.