Cynthia Cote, president and executive director of the Betty J. Borry Breast Cancer Retreats, took part in the nonprofit’s first weekend outdoor adventure, back in 1995.
Intended for women survivors of breast cancer, the weekend introduced Cynthia, a nurse practitioner as well as a breast cancer patient emerging from months of treatment, to the power of outdoor adventures to help women find strength from each other.
The Betty J. Borry Breast Cancer Retreats, a 501(c)(3) organization formed in 2002, fulfills the dream of founder Betty J. Borry. A breast cancer survivor herself, Betty believed her training in adventure-based education could help women reclaim their lives after cancer. Betty established the first Adventure Weekend in 1995 with the help of Ellen Moran of Eastern Mountain Sports, Inc. and the American Cancer Society.
The Betty J. Borry Breast Cancer Retreats conducts weekend retreats in the fall, winter and spring at outdoor education and retreat centers in New England. Guided by certified instructors, participants join in activities that vary from yoga, healing and expressive arts, drumming to kayaking, hiking, snowshoeing and high-ropes courses.
Betty passed away in 2001, but the program she created has helped more than 500 women renew their lives after cancer.
Judith Romano writes of her September 2012 retreat, “I found the group’s compassion and guidance therapeutic to body and mind. The entire program was uplifting, inspiring and motivating.”