October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month (NBCAM). The tradition celebrates 27 years of awareness, education, and empowerment this year.

Everyone knows someone who has been affected by this horrific disease - be it a mother, daughter, wife, sister, aunt, niece, or friend.

October represents a month of increased awareness and fundraising events for research, prevention, diagnosis, treatment, and finding a cure.

For 31 days a spotlight will shine on these facets. One little pink ribbon symbolizes it all.

Numerous events are planned across the country.

Avon Walk for Breast Cancer In It to End It is planned for Oct. 15-16 in New York City. Supporters will walk all over the island of Manhattan, completing a total of 40 miles. Local sponsors include Hudson River Park, Groupon, Au Bon Pain, and Seamless.

Other races will take place around the nation, such as the Making Strides Against Breast Cancer walk.

One of the biggest organizations is Susan G. Komen for the Cure. The CEO Nancy G. Brinker established the most-well known, largest, and best-funded breast cancer organization in the U.S. Since its establishment in 1982, Komen has been the source of $2 billion for breast cancer research, advocacy, and support.

Brinker's sister, Susan, died of breast cancer at 36-years-old in 1980. Since then, Brinker has been working to build a community of action, enlightenment, and compassion.

The Empire State Building will be aglow in pink from Oct. 14-16 to recognize NBCAM. The monument of the Angel of Independence was lit up on Sept. 30 in Mexico City. Other global landmarks will be illuminated as well. 

There is also significant endorsement from public figures and companies.  

Estee Lauder will be making a $500,000 donation to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation. It will be selling the Pink Ribbon Collection of jeweled pins, lipsticks, and make-up cases. Beauty Advisors at the store will be handing out pink ribbons to customers all month. 

The NFL joins the American Cancer Society to help support the cause. NFL players, coaches, and referees will wear pink during the month. Fans are also encouraged to sport the color and can pledge $1 for each point their favorite team scores during games.

The Ellen DeGeneras Show is collecting donations online to go towards the Susan G. Komen for the Cure foundation.  

A T-Shirt designed by Jennifer Aniston and part of the Ford's Warriors in Pink is currently on sale. All proceeds will go to the cause.

Some celebrities who have battled breast cancer themselves are Sheryl Crow, Kylie Minogue, Christina Applegate, Cynthia Nixon, and Melissa Etheridge. 

The promotion of a helpful, loving community of supportive individuals is vital for the healing and restorative processes.

The American Cancer Society estimates that in 2011 alone there were approximately 230,480 new cases of invasive breast cancer in women.

One of the most emphasized tips is prevention. Early detection can help save lives. Women 40 years and older are encouraged to get mammogram screenings every one to two years.

The NBCAM organization is a partnership of national public service organizations, professional medical associations, and government agencies working together to promote breast cancer awareness, share information on the disease, and provide greater access to screening services.