In 2011, Michele Baldwin, a 45-year-old single mother of three, took a last opportunity to make a difference in the world. She was diagnosed with last stage cervical cancer & had only few months to live.

While news like this normally breaks a person’s resolve, it gave Michele a new purpose for the rest of her life. She decided to travel to India with an aim to do something never attempted before- ‘paddle boarding through the 700-mile length of the river Ganga’.

Considering highest cervical cancer mortality rate in India, she chose India & paddled through Ganga, with an aim to raise awareness about a disease that is preventable but still claims the lives of more than 270,000 women worldwide on a yearly basis.

More than 50,000 women in India lose their life to cervical cancer every year.

Most of the people don’t know that cervical cancer is ‘preventable’.

It is caused by Human Papillomavirus (HPV) in majority of cases, which is transmitted through unsafe sexual intercourse. HPV has a vaccine which helps the body fight off the infection before it can lead to cancerous growth.

With the documentary, titled ‘Lady Ganga’, the director along with writer Mark Hefti, cameraman Nat Stone, documentary filmmaker Frederic Lumiere, hope to ensure Michele’s message has a global reach. The film is slated to release in the summer of 2015 and the makers have promised to donate 100% of the profits to the Michele Baldwin Memorial Fund, managed by the American Sexual Health Association.

Michele Baldwin breathed her last in February 2012, but her efforts to spread awareness about the prevention of cervical cancer among women throughout the world live on.

Image courtesy- lumiere media

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