A bra-illiant idea! Manchester clinic donates old bras to women in developing nations

A Manchester Cosmetic Surgery practice has found the solution to a common problem faced by women post breast-operation: what to do with your now-useless bras?

MYA Cosmetic Surgery Manchester has teamed up with BCR Global Textiles and Against Breast Cancer’s Bra Recycling scheme in urging women to bequeath their unloved undies to ‘Bra Banks’, now set up at all UK MYA practices.

So far, more than 500 bras have been donated at the Manchester clinic and these will be sent to women in developing parts of Africa.

And, for every tonne of bras donated, BCR is also pledging £1,000 towards Against Breast Cancer’s UK research.

To put this amount in perspective, that’s 9,000 bras. Not a huge number considering that the average UK woman will own nine.

MYA’s chairman John Ryan said: “We’re extremely proud to be able to help with such a worthwhile cause. It’s a question many of our patients ask us. What should they do with their old bras after their breast enlargement or reduction surgery?

“Being able to donate them to Against Breast Cancer means our patients can make a really positive impact on the lives of women in Africa as well as women at home.”

The Manchester clinic alone performs 2,700 breast augmentations and reductions each year.

But with half of all women admitting to owning bras they have never worn, and a third of women knowingly keeping bras that are the wrong size, MYA is calling out for all women to dispose of their battered bras with consideration.

The Bra Recycling scheme, started by Against Breast Cancer and BRC, has had huge success, collecting in total over a quarter of a million bras.

Against Breast Cancer’s Fundraising Manager Emma McDonald said of the initiative: “Recycling is a major fundraising stream for Against Breast Cancer; it helps us, not only in raising vital income but is a valuable tool in raising awareness.”

Whilst business may be booming for the UK bra industry, high-production costs in many developing places result in undergarments often being too expensive to manufacture.

And as well as passing along often never-worn castoffs, BRC work to provide local traders in these places the opportunity to make a living through selling textiles.

Back pain and chafing caused by extreme heat are only two of the many difficulties that result from women not having the correct support, and evidently old bras serve a much greater purpose than merely creating a nice silhouette underneath a t-shirt.

MYA Manchester’s Bra Bin can be found at MYA Cosmetic Surgery – Manchester, 2nd Floor, St John’s Chambers, St John St, Manchester

For more information on the partnership:

Picture courtesy of Keri, with thanks.

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