In a decision “not made lightly,” the Susan G. Komen Foundation for the Cure announced Wednesday that it was canceling seven of its signature three-day fundraising walks next year.
The decision comes about 18 months after the organization stoked considerable rage
from some supporters when then-Komen Vice President Karen Handel pushed the organization to end funding for Planned Parenthood. Komen eventually reversed the decision, angering some other supporters.
Komen spokeswoman Andrea Rader told The Washington Post
that economic uncertainty and competition from other charities forced the breast-cancer education and research organization to cut the number of locales with three-day walks from 14 to seven.
“Many participants have reported that enthusiasm for the series remains very high, but it is more difficult for people to donate at levels they had in the past,” she said in a statement. “We hope to one day return to a larger number of markets, but believe strongly that this adjustment will allow us to return the greatest amount of dollars to the cause at this time.”
2013’s three-day events will continue as planned, but in 2014, walks will not be held in Boston, Chicago, Cleveland, San Francisco, Washington D.C., the Tampa Bay area, and Arizona.
To participate in a three-day walk, advocates are asked to raise at least $2,300 each.
The Planned Parenthood controversy isn’t the only issue that may have soured people on the organization. Last month, critics called for CEO and founder Nancy Brinker to leave the organization’s board of directors after they discovered her salary had increased by 64 percent in 2012
. In February, reports found that only about 15 percent of donations to the organization actually go to research